Golf Central Magazine- Vol 21 Issue 7

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W W W . G O L F C E N T R A L M A G . C O M

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Legendary Lifestyle

There’s a reason Gary Player chose Boca Grove to be his first American home and it’s not just because he made history here.

Legends don’t make tee times and neither will you Located in the heart of Boca Raton, Florida | Limited Number of Non-Resident Memberships Available Contact Valerie at (561) 487-5300 ext 132 | |

header from the publisher

Volume 21, Issue 7

Publisher: Terrie L. Purdum Editor in Chief: Shannon Coates Graphic Design: Melahn Cable, Photojournalists: Greg and Beverly Wise Photographers: Lynn Pelham, Brion Price, Peter Hakansson

Mike Coonan, Becky Galloway Senior Correspondent: Rick Harris, Sr. International Correspondent: Dove Jones Inflluencer/Ambassador: Chad Smith Contributing Writers: Jay Golden, PGA; Greg Wise, Bob Bolton, Greg Corbo, Elisa Gaudet, Mike Jamison, Mike May, Ron Heller, Rich Styles, Fred Seely, Deb Shuck, JL Quebbeman, Linda Williams-Sieg Editor Emeritus: Joel Jackson, CGCS Retired Regional Partner: Doug Hollandsworth, Founder-Georgia Golf Trail

Golf Central Magazine is published monthly by:

Reflecting On Connecting There are so many ways

to connect in today’s world: e-mail, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, blogging, texting (or sexting depending on who it is). For me, I prefer the green of the links to connect. The only way I can truly be connected is face-to-face, which in this social-distanced environment is Zoom. Many people feel that an e-mail blast or social media post is THE way to connect with people. That is the concept that is being sold. Both have their place, but for me it’s critical to look into people’s eyes, hear the rhythm of their speech, and the laughter in their voice. The value that Golf Central brings the golf industry is connecting industry leaders with the consumer golfers. The reality of today’s market demands that we all do more for less. No matter the year, it seems the only thing that does not diminish over time are expectations. Each golf course is a living organism that is the foundation of an $80B per year business, larger than the movie industry. As a meaningful contributor to the nation’s economic engine, golf generates employment, economic development, commerce, and tax revenues. From operations to capital investment to supplies, charities, real estate, hospitality and tourism, golf provides a recreational pastime and affords families the opportunity to bond. It also allows friends the occasion to enjoy each other’s company, professionals the forum to conduct business, seniors value-based leisure, and provides structure in our youth virtues to last a lifetime. Despite the economic woes of the nation and the challenges faced uniquely in hospitality, the success of any industry is predicated on working cooperatively towards a common goal through continual reinvesting.

Sand Hill Publishing & Public Relations 1549 Warrington Court, Winter Springs, FL 32708

NEW PHONE: 321.765.7550 E-mail: ©2020 Golf Central Magazine. No portion of this publication may be reprinted without the prior written permission of the Publisher. Editorial contributions are welcome, but Golf Central Magazine assumes no responsibility for unsolicited proposals, manuscripts and photographs. All materials submitted not accompanied by a selfaddressed stamped envelope will not be returned. Mailing, electronic mailing or faxing of contributions constitutes an expressed warrant on the part of the contributor that all material is original and does not infringe on the rights of others. Golf Central Magazine retains all reprint rights and reserves the right to edit any submitted material to meet our specifications for publishing and or use in advertising or promotion. The Publisher and staff are not responsible for any loss or grievance by any person or persons whatsoever, due in any way or in part to the content of this publication. The Publisher reserves the right to refuse to accept any material deemed inappropriate or in bad taste.

Never ever quit investing in connecting! 2009 North Florida PGA Amateur of the Year 6

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

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Volume 21, Issue 7 Cart Girl 22 Gabriella Echeverry FEATURE 10 Rumbling Bald on Lake Lure Fore Your Health 12 b:Rare Golf Bachelor 18 Jimmy Jones Golf Bachelorette 14 Patricia Clark Golf Business 28 2021 Virtual PGA Show

Departments 20 30 32 48 50 42 46

Georgia Golf Trail Golf History Golf History South Florida PFA Georgia PGA North Florida PGA Freddy's Fairway Thoughts

14 W W W . G O L F C E N T R A L M A G . C O M

Growing the Game 46 Youth of Course

Feature A

rticle Pg 1

Improving Performance 44 Ultimate Long Drive Academy


Living on the Links 16 Golf Life Navigators Special Events 26 Big Money Classic 36 Orca Golf Bags Women's Match Play Championship Stay & Play 24 Streamsong Resort Turf Life 54 Not So Superintendent 56 Sunniland Super Spotlight: Eric Ruha 58 Audubon International 56 Sunniland Super Spotlight: Bryan Dixon


What's New 34 PopStroke 38 Jekyll Golf Young Guns 40 Highlands Junior Tour



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• Golf • Rumbling Bald is one of Western North Carolina’s only mull-course golf retreats. An hour’s drive from Asheville and less than two hours from Charlooe, it features two contrassng 18-hole layouts. APPLE VALLEY Designed by noted golf course architect and Pinehurst naave Dan Maples, Apple Valley stretches to nearly 6,800 yards and features expansive views of Bald Mountain and the surrounding Lake Lure area. Maples essmated that 75% of all shots at Apple Valley are either level or downhill, virtually unheard of for a mountain course. Shimmering mountain lakes adorn 12 holes on Apple Valley, but water only occasionally comes into play. The back nine is widely regarded as one of the best closing stretches in the Western Carolinas. The par-3 14th hole, with its shallow green and back bunker, is reminiscent of No. 12 at Augusta Naaonal. Exhilaraang par-5s abound throughout Apple Valley, including the straight away downhill par-5 15th hole. BALD MOUNTAIN In contrast to Apple Valley, Bald Mountain is what many golf aficionados refer to as a “true North Carolina mountain course”. Designed by W.B. Lewis, the 6,300-yard Bald Mountain course is renowned for its unique configuraaon of five par-5s and five par-3s. A protégé of golf course architect George Cobb, Lewis is known for his tradiional approach to course design. This philosophy is reflected in Bald Mountain’s playability from tee to green. Elevaaon changes, parrcularly on the back, offer a beguiling mix of uphill and downhill shots amid a variety of doglegs and straight fairways. The majority of green fronts are open, bringing both the ground and aerial game into play.

• Groups and Packages • Rumbling Bald offers over 140 unique vacaaon rentals that are ideal for golf groups of various sizes and feature golf course and mountain views. Whether it is a tournament, large overnight group, or small buddies trip, Rumbling Bald’s golf vacaaon planners are available to assist every step of the way. If it is for business, we can design custom corporate packages including meeeng space, catered meals, golf instruccon, and off-site accviies. FREE GOLF TRIP QUOTE (828) 694-3072


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Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

golf bachelorette

Patricia Clark aka as Tricia, aka Little Bit, Sunshine… or Butterscotch, lol. Where were you born? Colorado Springs, Colorado Did you grow up there? No, I grew up in Lakeland, Florida (L-Town) Is “acting your age” overrated? Absolutely overrated… you are as young as your heart and mind feels. I’m 32 in my mind What do you do for a living? I work for PricewaterhouseCoopers supporting the Partners and Client Engagements within Cybersecurity, Advisory and Assurance lines of service. What would you like to do for a living? Work for a non-profit organization giving back to a cause I truly believe in while networking on the golf course. Aside from golf; what do you prefer for fun and relaxation? Well since golf is my fun and relaxation, I have to say I absolutely love the beach, I enjoy the outdoors, I enjoy bowling, fishing… I love music especially listening to live music. What golf apparel do you like to wear? Skorts are my go-to and my hat game is on point. Whom do you most admire for their inner and outer beauty? Michelle Obama Tell us about your first kiss? Ewwwwww… let’s not. Steak, chicken, or seafood? Seafood or some good ol’ Fried catfish, hush puppies, and cheese grits. Tell us something about yourself that only your closest friends know. I used to be a Barista at Barney’s Coffee while in high school. I could make a 14

mean cappuccino, lattes, Frappuccinos, espressos you name it I can make it … I believe that is why I am only 5’1”. What three things would you need to survive on a deserted island? I’m Simple… Food, Drinking Water and Shelter. Who would you like to have with you on the same deserted island; and why? My Love, who better else to be stranded on a deserted island with…but if not my Love… Oprah Winfrey What do you find to be the most annoying habit people demonstrate on the golf course? Slow play drives me crazy…especially when you are acting like a golf pro and ending up with a 120+ score. Name the three most important things to you in this world. God, My Children, and Good Health! Given the choice; would you select love, success, or money to keep yourself happy? Love, Love, Love What do you fear the most? I only Fear God What three people would you most like to play with in your fantasy golf foursome? Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, President Obama What are some of your great accomplishments? Being Instrumental in the Resurgence of the UGA (United Golfer Association) and raising my kiddos as a single mom. Favorite comedian? Kevin Hart. Movies, comedy, drama, action, romance? I am a hopeless Romantic…so Romance… The Notebook, Eat, Pray, Love… Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Love and Basketball, Love Jones … looking to create Love and Golf… lol. Last book you read? The Party’s Not Over Until God Says So by V. Lynn Whitfield News, current events; hardcopy or on-line? Hardcopy Favorite magazine? New Favorite of course … Golf Central Magazine and Golf Digest. Favorite charity to support? Fore Life Inc. with Paula PearsonTucker and Lawrence “LT“ Taylor. Fore Life, Inc. is a youth mentoring program that use the experience and opportunities associated with the game of golf to empower vulnerable children with better decisionmaking and resilience building skills to help them realize and achieve their full potential. F- Foresight O – Ownership RRespect E – Excellence P- Pause

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

P- Plan P- Picture P -Proceed = The 4 P’s Fore Life & 2 Making Good Decisions. We have the Throwback Celebrity Golf Weekend April 22-25, 2021 What else would you like for us to know about you? In my Journey into Golf (2 years 9 months), I have managed to make a Hole in One at Bloomingdale Golfers Club ( Dec.6th, 2020) that was caught on camera and I have a video of it. I also Broke 80 ( my goal for 2020)…with a 76 at Rogers Park in Tampa, Florida. Folks from the Black Golfers Association, Black Golfers Alliance, Sisters Across America, Fore Life Inc. The APGA, The Golf Partners and so many other great golf groups and associations have welcomed me into this game that I love with open arms and I just love it. This is only the beginning and so much more to come.


By Jason Becker

living on the links

How Covid may have saved the gated golf community The Quarry Golf Club in Naples, Florida has seen 95% of new equity member inquiries that wish to live inside the gates of the community.

It’s here. An outright surge from consumers of the North looking to escape big city life, cold winters and that dreaded tax bill. New member inquiries are up 50% (or more) at most Florida private clubs. Real estate is through the roof, up 48% in Southwest Florida compared to January of 2021. But how does this influx of buyers directly affect the health of private clubs? You may be surprised to learn that for many, this mad rush of demand may have just saved them from a detrimental situation that was not too far off, pre-Covid. I can remember standing on a stage at Reynolds Lake Oconee in the fall of 2018. My presentation was going to be a direct warning to club officials from across the country that we had a serious problem on our hands. Buyers of private club memberships to the Sunbelt were trending in an aggressive direction to not live inside the gates of their future club. At that time, 49% of prospective golf members who used our algorithms - to find their ideal golf club and membership - were saying they intended to live outside the gates and would be fine with a non-resident membership. So basically, one out of every two golf prospects had no intention of buying a home in the club they visited. The risk of possibly being portrayed as an “outsider” or “step-child” of the club did not seem to bother future buyers. But then Covid happened. Within five months, we saw a complete shift in buyer demand for gated golf communities. Security, safe harbor and a controlled environment were all on the mind of buyers in this new world of pandemics and instability. By the end of 2020, the percentage of those looking to purchase outside of the gates


Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

The Club at Ibis in West Palm Beach, Florida reports a record start to the year in active and pending sales within the gates of their 1840 home golf community. had dropped 13%, down to 36% of the

2020, before the world changed. Many

marketplace – with no signs of stopping.

private club communities in Florida

Yes, a positive trend seems to be

How did Covid save so many clubs from a potential disaster? Capture rate.

would tell you their capture rate was

occurring for gated golf communities

down to 30-40%. Quick math referenc-

in their effort to increase the number

ing our equation above. If the same

of residents to full golf members, but

500 home golf community only had

this story should be read as a caution-

175 residents who were full golf mem-

ary tale. Club’s absolutely need to have

bers, how can the club survive? It

a pulse (if not management) of the

would need at least 350 full golf mem-

real estate transactions that are occur-

bers to make ends meet financially.

ring within their gates going forward.

On that stage in 2018, we walked through the steady decline of capture rate of most Florida clubs when it comes to new home buyer (in the gates) who purchases a full golf membership. In the 1990’s, most club communities had capture rates of 70-80%. That meant, if the club had 500 homes, 400 or so residents were full golf members. This is important because the full golf member generates the majority of the revenue at the club. For a deeper understanding of how a club operates financially, I asked Jim Butler, CEO of Club Benchmarking, his thoughts on the importance of full golf members to the balance sheet: “The dues income at a club with a golf operation generates 52% of the total revenues at the median. In addition, golf contributes 13% more revenue to the club making the full golf member the most significant factor to the club for both short and long-term financial sustainability.” Let’s jump ahead to February of Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

saved clubs from financial peril.

So, the issue of capture rate was very

Although most clubs do not make a

much there and had club officials trying

dime on the real estate transactions

to figure out what direction to take. Open

occurring in their gates, they still

up the gates to non-resident members?

must monitor capture rate closely.

Increase dues to our existing members?

For buyers in the market who are

Try and get revenue from the other ame-

learning as they read, ask the club

nities? These were all questions board-

what their current capture rate is. If

rooms were facing as the trends were

under the tipping point we discussed

working against them - until mid-2020.

earlier, you might inquire what the

Today, 73% of buyers coming to the

long-range plan is to increase capture

marketplace are planning to com-

rate. Just like any investment, you want

bine their search of club and home.

to ask questions and conduct proper

In many markets, we are seeing up to

due-diligence so you make the best

85% of buyers wishing to live inside

decision for you and your family.

the gates of a golf community and

To gain access to other educational

enjoy the access to all of the ameni-

resources or to connect with a golf certi-

ties. In all, this was a much-needed

fied real estate agent/brokerage, please

shift in demand for gated golf com-


munities and quite possibly, may have


golf bachelor Where were you born? Born in Tampa, Florida. I am half Canadian as my mother was from Vancouver Island, BC. Is “acting your age” overrated? It changes from weekday to weekend. What do you do for a living? Play professional golf. Aspiring to make a career on the PGA Tour. Aside from golf; what do you prefer for fun and relaxation? I love sports, especially ice hockey. GO BOLTS! I also play pickleball, if you haven’t tried it you should! What golf apparel do you like to wear? Peter Millar Tell us about your first kiss? Typical love story… on the bus ride home from school. Steak, chicken, or seafood? Steak. What do you find to be the most annoying habit people demonstrate on the golf course? Using a poker chip as a ball marker. What do you fear the most? Losing the closest people in my life. What three people would you most like to play with in your fantasy golf foursome? Dawn Coe-Jones (mom,) Arnold Palmer, Michael Jordan Relaxed evening at home, or nightclub and cocktails? Nothing like a couple drinks and the dance floor. Favorite actor? Leonardo DiCaprio Last book you read? To Kill a Mockingbird News, current events; hardcopy or on-line? A coffee and a freshly printed newspaper. Favorite charity to support? The Amanda Lee Fund benefiting Moffitt Cancer Center


Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


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Shallow Hole

By Mike May

georgia golf trail

The Georgia Golf Trail Presented by

For the fourth straight year,

the Georgia Golf Trail will conduct the Georgia Golf and Travel Awards. The goal of the program is to honor the most popular destinations along the Georgia Golf Trail. As in the past, there are many categories such as the Favorite Golf Course, Best Par 3, Best Par 4, Best Par 5, Favorite Restaurant, Favorite Hotel/Inn/ Lodge/Cottage, Favorite Resort, Favorite State Park, Favorite Attraction in Georgia, Best Value for Golf Travel in Georgia, Favorite 19th Hole, Favorite Place To Hold Meetings, and Favorite City To Visit in Georgia. In 2020, more than 17,000 votes were cast from August to December. Those participating in this program hailed from 30 U.S. states and Canada. The 17,000+ votes cast represented a 25 percent increase over 2019. “To give you an idea of the diversity of depth in each category here in Georgia, we’ve had a few destinations win a category more than once,” says Doug Hollandsworth, Founder, Georgia Golf Trail. For three straight years, Savannah has been the Best City To Visit in Georgia. In 2019 and 2020, the Fantasy in Lights Christmas at Callaway Resort & Gardens in Pine Mountain has been the Best Attraction. The 7th hole at the Sky Valley Country Club in Sky Valley, Geor-

Savannah has been the #1 city to visit in 2018, 2019, and 2020

gia was the Favorite Par 3 in 2019 and 2020. For the last two years, the Brassies Grill at the Brasstown Valley Resort in Young Harris, Georgia has been the Favorite 19th Hole. In 2018 and 2020,

the 16th hole at the Arrowhead Pointe Golf Club at Richard B. Russell State Park in Elberton has been the top par 5. In 2018 and 2019, the Callaway Resort & Gardens in Pine Mountain was the top hotel/lodge/inn/cottage. In 2018 and 2020, The Wharf at the Jekyll Island Club Resort on Jekyll Island was the favorite restaurant. And, Best Place to Hold Meeting for 2018 and 2020 was Chateau Elan Winery and Resort in Braselton.

Jekyll Island GC was the #1 golf course in 2020 20

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Annual GGT Travel Awards Winners from 2020 Favorite Golf Course – Jekyll Island Golf Club (Jekyll Island, GA)

Favorite Par 3 – #7 Sky Valley Country Club (Sky Valley, GA)

Favorite Par 4 – #5 of Lakemont @ Stone Mountain Park Golf Club (Stone Mountain, GA)

Favorite Par 5 – #16 Arrowhead Pointe Golf Course @ Richard B. Russell State Park (Elberton, GA)

Best Resort – The Club at Savannah Harbor (Savannah, GA) Best Hotel/Lodge/Inn/Cottage – Little Ocmulgee State Park

The Wharf Restaurant was the #1 restaurant in 2020

(McCrae, GA)

Favorite Restaurant – The Wharf @ Jekyll Island Club Resort (Jekyll Island, GA)

Best State Park – Richard B. Russell State Park (Elberton, GA)

Best Attraction – Fantasy in Lights Christmas @ Callaway Resort & Gardens (Pine Mountain, GA)

Best Value for Golf Travel in Georgia – Georgia State Parks Annual Golf Pass

Favorite 19th Hole – Brassies Grill @ Brasstown Valley Resort (Young Harris, GA)

Favorite City to Visit to Georgia – Savannah, GA Best Place to Hold Meeting – Chateau Elan Winery and Resort (Braselton, GA)

Best Place To Live in a Golf Community – Reynolds Lake Oconee (Greensboro, GA)

To cast your vote for the 2021 Georgia Golf & Travel Awards, access Voting will commence this summer. Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Callaway Gardens was the #1 lodge in 2018 and 2019 21

cart girl

Where did you grow up? Ocala, Florida.

working but hadn’t shared the news with anyone quite yet. One of our sweet members had seen me on the cart and randomly asked me about my mom. Immediately after sharing the news with him, he prayed with me for her health. I’m so thankful for the acts of kindness I get to see and experience everyday as a cart girl.

Which group of people did you associate most with in high school? I’ve always had an easy time making friends. Many of my friends I met were through high school sports, clubs, church, and community activities. The one group of people I associated the most with in high school would be my church/youth group friends. I built some of the strongest friendships with those who shared a common love and passion for Christ. What is your favorite sport to play? Favorite to watch? Growing up, I loved playing volleyball. I never pursued it in high school, but it was for sure a big hobby of mine. My favorite sport to watch is football of course, big SEC fan! Do you enjoy playing golf? Are there any golfers in your family? I do enjoy playing golf. Once I started working at Ocala Golf Club, I became really interested in playing, so I took some lessons. My dad has played golf for as long as I can remember, so we golf whenever we get a chance. He actually planted the idea of working at a golf course, so I have him to thank for that! What is your favorite part of being a cart girl? What is your least favorite part? My favorite part of being a cart girl would have to be the relationships I’ve made with many of the golfers, especially the members. I see many of them at least 4 days a week, so it’s natural to learn more about them and create relationships with them. They often ask how I am doing in college and check up on me, which makes my job so much more enjoyable. My least favorite part of being a cart girl would have to be working

What type of music do you prefer? I listen to a wide variety of music genres, but my favorite right now would have to be pop music. What hobbies do you enjoy? I enjoy spending time with friends and family, shoe shopping, watching football, and playing golf. Photo by Beverly Wise

Gabriella Echeverry

in the winter, this Florida girl wasn’t built for it! If you weren’t a cart girl, what would you be doing? If I weren’t a cart girl, I would be a full-time college student. Since the covid-19 pandemic, many of my college courses have been moved online which has afforded me the availability to work while still attending college online. What is your most memorable moment working as a cart girl? My most memorable moment working as a cart girl was a month ago when my mom had been hospitalized with Covid and Pneumonia. At the time I was

What is your idea of “the perfect date”? My idea of a perfect date would be a picnic watching the sunset. Relaxed evening at home, or nightclub and cocktails? I am very much a homebody, so relaxed evenings at home are my go-to! Favorite comedian? Kevin Hart, hands down. Favorite type of movie? Romantic Comedies! Although I can appreciate good action movies. Favorite charity to support? Hospice has been a dear charity in my life. My family has experienced firsthand how hospice comforts and cares for loved ones and I will forever support their mission. What else would you like for us to know about you? I am so thankful for Golf Central Magazine for giving me this opportunity to share a little about me. Also, a huge thanks to my Ocala Golf Club family who helped make this possible!

Vodka - Ginger Ale - Grape Juice

Grab it to go... No Bartender needed... Perfect for halfway house... Ideal for beverage cart! Great for Tournaments! - New and Fun!


Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

stay & play

Streamsong Resort Announces 2021 Events Calendar

Family Cup Event

Reservations now available for golf events throughout the season

From a family tournament to an amateur championship, Streamsong Resort has special events planned throughout the year that cater to golfers of all skills. With the Oct. 2020 reopening of Streamsong Red and Streamsong Blue now sporting the revolutionary new ultradwarf bermudagrass, Mach 1, there has never been a better time to stay-and-play at Streamsong. “We have plenty to celebrate as we enter a new year at Streamsong, and we are thrilled that Streamsong Red and Streamsong Blue are back and better than ever,” said Scott Wilson, director of golf at Streamsong. “We hope these special events provide a fun environment for people to experience the

resort and our three award winning courses.” The events calendar, which can also be found on the resort’s new website at, is as follows: (Note that package pricing does not include tax or fees). • Streamsong Spring Classic (Sunday, March 21– Tuesday, March 23, 2021): Kick off the year with this two-person best ball competition. The event includes two rounds of golf (on Streamsong Red & Streamsong Blue), a pairings party and an awards lunch. Pricing starts at $719 per person based on double occupancy for a two-night stay, or $819 per person based on double occupancy for a three-night stay.

• Streamsong Family Cup (Friday, June 18 – Sunday, June 20, 2021): Spend Father’s Day weekend at Streamsong and enjoy a memorable parent/child competition. Age groups/divisions will be determined by the age of the youngest

Streamsong Red No. 17 by Larry Lambrecht


Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

competitor, and all ages are welcome to play. Teams can be comprised of grandparents and grandchildren and other family members as well. The format of the event includes a scramble, two-person best ball, a practice round (cart included), pairings party and awards lunch. Pricing starts at $619 per person based on double occupancy for a two-night stay, or $679 per person based on double occupancy for a three-night stay. • Streamsong Amateur Championship (Friday, July 30 - Sunday, Aug. 1, 2021): Calling all male and female adult or junior amateurs! Be among the first to participate in the inaugural Streamsong Amateur Championship. The format will be individual stroke play and will include a pairings party and awards ceremony. Pricing starts at $480 per person based on double occupancy for a two-night stay, or $527.50 per person based on double occupancy for a three-night stay.

Fall Classic

• Streamsong Summer Classic (Friday, Aug. 20 – Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021): A seasonal favorite at Streamsong, this four-ball tournament includes two rounds of golf, a pairings party and awards ceremony. Pricing starts at $499 per person based on double occupancy for a two-night stay, or $554 per person based on double occupancy for a threenight stay. • Streamsong Fall Classic (Sunday, Oct. 24 – Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021): Don’t miss your chance to play a round on each of Streamsong’s incredible courses with this competition, which includes a two-person best ball (carts included for each round), parings party and awards lunch. Pricing starts at $704 per person based on double occupancy for a threenight stay, or $759 per person based on double occupancy for a four-night stay. • Streamsong Holiday Cup (Saturday, Dec. 11 – Monday, Dec. 13, 2021): Close out the year with a two-person best ball on each of Streamsong’s three courses (carts included for each round), pairings party and awards ceremony. Pricing starts at $719 per person based on double occupancy for a two-night stay, or $819 per person based on double occupancy for a three-night stay. Streamsong is home to Florida’s highest rated golf courses, and the only destination in the world with three distinct golf courses designed by legendary architects Coore/Crenshaw, Doak, and Hanse/Wagner. For more information on these special events, or to book a reservation, visit Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


Streamsong Blue No. 7 by Larry Lambrecht 25

By Greg Wise Photos by Beverly and Greg Wise

special events

Playing for Big Money Golf We have all played big money golf… or what we thought was Big Money. But for nearly 200 Mini Tour golfers teeing it up on January 4th at The Legacy Club at Alaqua, in Longwood, Florida, this was to be the ultimate challenge. This 3-day event aptly named “Big Money Golf Classic” featured many last names you think you might know… but not sure where you know them from. Watching Taylor Funk, from Jacksonville finish up and walk by us, heading to his car, I was thinking… I know that name. Only to realize his dad Fred Funk, a PGA Champions Tour player was on his bag. Wow, what a great family connection. Chase Koepka… okay, that name sounds familiar. Yep, checking Google, he is the younger brother of Brooks Koepka, US Open winner in 2017. So, the Big Money Golf Classic presented Joshua Gibson

by StakeKings had the competition to make this event tough and making the top 40 after the cut, even tougher. Big Money Golf Classic headed by Perry Faulkner, Chief Operation Officer, and his staff, set their goal of having the largest purse in Mini Tour Golf. Offering for a full field, 2 preliminary rounds, with the top 40 players battling

Chase Koepka 26

it out on the final day for a $400,000 purse, with the winner taking home a check for $100,000. The final round belonged to Adam Svensson from Jupiter, Florida. Adam fired a 3-under par 67, with a notable 4 straight birdies on holes 12 through 15, to hold off the charge and claim a 1-stroke victory over Joshua Gibson, from Grandville, Michigan to pocket the winner’s check for $100,000. Perry Faulkner, mentioned in the closing statements, we love Longwood and The Legacy Club, the Big Money Classic will be back in 2022, not giving any firm dates at this time, but in a Schwarzenegger way, stating… “We’ll be back.” For all golf fans that love to see the up-and-coming super stars, and a few celebrities to boot. Plan to attend this event when it comes back to The Legacy Club at Alaqua.

Champion Adam Svensson Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7






By Tony Leodora

golf business

Virtual PGA Show

EXPERIENCE Every year since 1992, the busiest business week of the year always has been devoted to the PGA Merchandise Show. It is the Super Bowl of the golf industry. To say it is an exhausting week – walking the miles of aisles at the mammoth Orange County Convention Center in Orlando – would be an understatement. To say that it is an important revenue generating week for many companies in the golf industry also would be an understatement.


This year was a very different experience. The pandemic of 2020 spilled over to 2021 and resulted in the cancellation of the traditional PGA Merchandise Show. In its place, the organizers worked hard – maybe harder than ever – to replace it with a Virtual PGA Show. It turned out to be something like replacing the honeymoon night with virtual sex. Hope that example is not too graphic … but you get the idea. The goal was to create a platform

that presented opportunities to connect with other people in the golf industry and still drive forward business. The Virtual Experience & Marketplace offered engaging presentations and education sessions, thought-provoking dialogue, networking events, virtual appointments, and the discovery of products from nearly 400 participating brands. Of course, the first thing that strikes regular attendees is the drop in

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

participating brands, from the normal number of around 1,000. Then there was the frustration of navigating the techno-maze in order to communicate with people that were normally available in their booths for face-to-face personal encounters. “If you really needed to get important meetings accomplished you could do it … but it wasn’t always easy,” commented Frank Carroll, CEO of Greenkeepers, the company that specializes in a number of golf accessories. His highly visible booth at the Show, recognizably marked by a massive model of his 4 Yards More Tee, is always a beehive of activity. “When you’re used to people visiting you all day, every day, it’s quite different to interact through an occasional virtual meeting or two a day,” Carroll reasoned. “We did some business but we are still trying to catch up with people.” From the media’s point of view, there were two things missing from this year’s

publicist who attended – and intensely worked – the PGA Show every year. He missed that experience this year. “I missed seeing all of the people I work with all year and meeting new people,” said Armes. “There’s no replacing the value of walking up to someone with a smile on your face and pressing a pound of flesh. You can’t get that from a virtual show.” Different manufacturers also weighed in on this year’s Virtual PGA Merchandise Show. Eric Nelson is the president of CertiFresh Cigars, an annual exhibitor at the PGA show, who opted out this year. “We average signing about 150 new golf courses from the PGA Show every year,”

experience: 1. Human contact. The PGA Show is the annual opportunity to reinforce old relationships and build new ones. Picture a reunion for writers and broadcasters. It is extremely hard to do that virtually. 2. A number of companies did a good job of sending information in advance of the Virtual Show, touting new product releases. Some discovery was available there. But there were so many other new products that went unnoticed. There was just no way to discover the same amount of new technology and innovation that comes to light every year in a live setting. Martin Armes is a veteran golf

remarked Nelson. “It usually happens the same way. A pro walks up to our booth with his buddy from another course. He knows us, says hi, then turns to his buddy and says, ‘I can’t believe you don’t use CertiFresh in your shop. They turned our whole cigar program around.’ The next thing you know, we have a new client.” The Pyramid Putter company launched its new line of putters three years ago at the PGA Show and benefitted greatly from the experience. This year they launched their new Pyramid P3 Pharaoh wedge and they face a tougher battle. “We made a few connections but we really will have to complete the rollout

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

of the wedge through an extensive social media marketing campaign,” explained co-founder Matt Stephens. “The money we saved by not attending the show will certainly be spent on the needed followup.” Bridgestone Golf also had a major product launch – their new e12 Contact golf ball. They anticipated the challenges of the Virtual Show and reacted early with a multi-million dollar publicity campaign that included shipping samples of the new golf ball and an interactive video box to members of the media across the country. “The product box was the brainstorm of our president, Dan Murphy,” said Adam Rehberg, Bridgestone’s golf ball fitting manager. “It was a brilliant move to get something tangible in the hands of the right people. The feedback has been great.” Tour Edge Golf was another company that had a major launch Demo Day – their Exotics 721 Series of clubs. Across the line there is a major technological development that requires detailed explanation. “I’ve loved the PGA Show experience for the last 20 years,” remarked Jon Claffey, Tour Edge’s vice president of marketing. “But we opted not to be a part of the Virtual Show this year. “We had a major product launch and actually held off until after the PGA Show dates so that we could grab the spotlight. We’ve had good success contacting the media and all of our domestic distributors. It’s a timeconsuming and costly process but we’re using the money we saved from not going to the PGA Show. The big thing that we missed this year was the face-toface opportunity with our international distributors.” That brings up a final question. How many companies will analyze the amount of money they saved by not having a large booth at the PGA Show this year and bringing multiple staff members to Orlando for a week? And after analysis, will they return to next year’s PGA Show … if there is one? These are huge questions looming over the golf industry’s biggest business event – the annual PGA Merchandise Show. Hopefully, a pandemic-free PGA Show in 2022 will answer those questions. 29

By Mike May

golf history

Happy 100th Anniversary:

The South Course at The Daytona Beach Golf Club

Jack Nicklaus and Doug Sanders February 29, 1968

During his lifetime, renowned golf course architect Donald Ross left a lasting legacy on many Florida cities. One of those Sunshine State cities where Ross left a permanent ‘footprint’ is Daytona Beach, more specifically the South Course at the Daytona Beach Golf Club (600 Wilder Blvd, Daytona Beach, Florida). Originally named the Daytona Golf and Country Club, the first nine holes of what is now known as the South Course were formally opened for play in 1921. The remaining nine holes were opened in January of 1923. That means that this year -- 2021 -- represents a century of golf in Daytona Beach. Happy Anniversary, Daytona Beach Golf Club! Well done, Donald Ross! In 1944, Ross returned to Daytona Beach to redesign some of the holes and greens. In 1997, the course was redesigned by Lloyd Clifton, who had served as the greenkeeper at the South Course in the 1950s. Now, the 18-hole, par-71 South Course at the Daytona Beach Golf Club (; 386-6713500) features three sets of tees that range from nearly 5,200 yards to just over 6,200 yards. The course – one of 53 30

Daytona Beach GC South Course railroad tracks Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

courses on the Florida Historic Golf Trail -- still follows some of the original routing laid out by Ross and winds through dense areas of pine trees and live oak trees, many of which are dripping with Spanish moss. While there are just a few water hazards on the course, the ones that do appear are cleverly placed -- often in front of greens, such as the 3rd, 4th, and 10th. On those three holes, if your tee shot is not struck properly, it often means a layup shot is required before you consider attacking the green with your approach shot. Three of the par threes – the 9th, 12th, and 15th – also have ponds situated between the tee and the greens, which requires a 100% carry to the putting surface. While the South Course is not exceptionally long, the joint efforts of Ross and Clifton to design holes with a dogleg or the look of a dogleg have added some distances to the 3rd, 6th, 8th, 11th, 16th, and the 18th. Overall, the tee shots on the South Course can be very forgiving, but the approaches are somewhat demanding. Right now, the 4th ranks as the hardest hole on the course. This par five stretches for 500 yards from the back tees and is bordered by railroad tracks along the left side of the fairway from tee to green. The current 4th green is on the south side of Wilder Boulevard, which is the road in and out of the golf course. However, the original 4th green

Original Clubhouse at Daytona Beach Golf Club was located on the north side of Wilder Boulevard, which meant that golfers had to negotiate vehicles that were entering and leaving the golf course. Today, that original 4th green is used as a delightful practice green complex for those wishing to improve their short game. A passing train is a common sight

Daytona Beach GC NOW South.Course 3rd Green Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

on this golf course, since the 4th, 5th, and 6th holes are separated from the main golf course by the railroad tracks. And, the 12th, 13th, and 14th holes are bordered on their right by those same railroad tracks. By the way, the railroad tracks are marked as being out of bounds. “The original (South) course designed by Mr. Ross was a short course with small greens that required precise second shots in order to score well. He used the surroundings to build a nice course for its time right in the middle of Daytona Beach,” said Brian Jaquet, director of golf, Daytona Beach Golf Club. “It is one of the few courses in America that still has a train running through the middle of the course. I think if Mr. Ross were around today he would see not much has changed to his original design except a few modifications to a couple of greens. An interesting note, Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson, Sam Snead and Jimmy Demaret played a challenge match on this course in 1946 with Demaret shooting 64 to secure the win. The other three gentleman shot 67, 67 and 69, respectfully. That would have been a great round to witness.” After meandering through the pages of Daytona Beach’s golfing history, I highly suggest you cap off your experience by sampling the fare at the Worm Burners Bar & Grill, which is located next to the pro shop. 31

golf history

Story by Greg Wise Photos by Beverly Wise

For many golfers… hickory shaft golf clubs are so old fashion. You see “Old Hickories” hanging on the walls of the most famous of golf clubs down to the mom-and-pop courses around the country. “I couldn’t play with those clubs,” claim many golfers… “I just don’t see the point, when I have such a forgiving set of clubs.” Placing history aside for just a moment… Hickory Golf is the way a golfer can truly channel the greats like: Jones, Vardon, Morris, Ouimet, or even Glenna Collett-Vare, that brings you in to the realization of what golf was back in the day. The clothing… the swagger… just that feeling that you have playing Hickories! I really guess we did not venture to far from history of the game, did we? We all read about Hickories in books. Take the game by the horns and play Hickory… The “Real” woods in the bag. Welcome to the 2nd Annual “Winter Park Hickory Classic.” My first venture out into the world of Hickories. Played on the “Winter Park 9,” this 9-hole course was a perfect venue for this game. It is such a feeling to pull into the parking lot, unload your clubs, wearing your Plus-Fours and argyle socks, get registered in to play and then just watch history unfold around you. You are instantly drawn into the styles… to the talk… the camaraderie of the 32

hickory golfer. The venue, Winter Park 9, is a 2480yard par 35 walking course. Reading the description on their website made me chuckle. “Surrounded by city streets and neighborhood homes, two churches and a cemetery. Train tracks border the east end of the course so passengers on SunRail and Amtrak get a beautiful view as they pull into the Winter Park Station.” You can imagine what was going through my mind. How many houses I was going to hit? (that’s a story for later)… or maybe pay my respects to someone I have not met yet. Even crossing Park Avenue in the middle of the course, had shades of the Beatles crossing Abby Road. The Winter Park Hickory Classic was the idea of Bill Geist, the past president of the Society of Hickory Golfers. Bill and his team fielded 30 golfers in the inaugural event in 2020. Not certain how the event would unfold, with a pandemic in the middle of trying to schedule this year’s event Bill and the team set out to do their best, and 44 Hickory Golfers made the event a smashing success in 2021. Hickory play is increasing. Tad Moore, President of Tad Moore Golf explained that the “Millennials more than any other age group are migrating to Hickory play. Allowing them to transport themselves back in time to experience the feeling of Hickories at Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

the turn of the century.” Get that modern technology out of the bag (opps… club manufactures are not going to love the suggestion) and transform your game with Hickory Clubs. Put the “Real Wood” back in the bag. What is my real take on playing Hickories? Playing Hickory Clubs for 4-months now… my game has gotten better. My “normal” irons are hitting stronger. I am more focused on contact of the ball. You just do not seem to grasp that with the oversize, forgiving, technically perfect golf heads today. If you see me playing today… you will see my High-Tech driver and Spoon (metals) in the bag, right next to my Hickory irons. See you in 2022 at the Winter Park Hickory Classic in Winter Park, Florida.

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


what's new Have you heard about PopStroke, the new experiential golf and casual dining concept? This dynamic, technologicallyinfused experience, caters to customers of all ages to enjoy putting courses designed by Tiger Woods and TGR Design. Tiger Woods is an owner in PopStroke and together with his team at TGR Design used their award-winning talents to create the Ft Myers Course and will design every course going forward. The PopStroke experience includes two 18-hole putting courses incorporating fairways, bunkers, and rough just as you would see on a traditional golf course. Guests play with Bridgestone golf balls, the brand the Tiger uses. Each player keeps the commemorative ball and the memories. Adding leisure to the golfing experience guests can have their favorite draft beer, wine or hand-crafted cocktail delivered to them while they play or enjoy the full-service restaurant and


bar. There is an outdoor game area with corn hole, ping pong and foosball. Two Florida locations, Fort Myers and Port St. Lucie, are being enjoyed with new course openings slated for 2021 in Orlando and Scottsdale, Arizona. Several other Florida cities are in the works.

For more information:

“Some of my happiest memories are spending time with my pops on the golf course having putting contests. I’m looking forward to others enjoying time with their kids at PopStroke.”


Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

special events

PXG Signs On as Presenting Sponsor for The ORCA Golf Bags Women’s Match Play Championship

Inaugural Tournament to Support and Celebrate Women in Golf ORCA Golf Bags Women’s Match Play

manufacturing business, and we want to promote that aspect of our industry

Championship has just announced PXG

as well.”

(Parsons Xtreme Golf) –an innovative

Each tournament will have its own

golf company dedicated to develop-

prize purse, a guarantee of $50,000

ing high-performance equipment and

shared between the two events. The

apparel – as presenting sponsor for

winner of the Match Play event will be

its inaugural tournament. The unique,

The ORCA Champion, and in addition

two-week tournament series for

to cash prize money will also receive

women professional players will take

a $2,500 Gift Card from PXG, as well as

place at World Golf Village October

a commemorative golf bag designed

25-November 5, 2021. As part of its

by Erica Bennett of ORCA Golf Bags.

sponsorship, PXG will be featured in

The tournament series will feature a

the official tournament logo, also being

pro-am event, junior clinics, and local

debuted today.

community-based activities and fund-

The ORCA Golf Bags Women’s Match

raising opportunities.

Play Championship presented by PXG

The ORCA Golf Bags Women’s Match

will feature 64 women professionals

Play Championship presented by PXG

pursuing their dream of playing on the

represents two of the 14 official events

LPGA Tour, battling over two weeks in

on the Women’s All Pro Tour (WAPT)

two separate, but connected, tourna-

in 2021. The WAPT was established in

ments. The first week will feature a

2019 in partnership with the LPGA’s

54-hole Stroke-Play tournament on

Symetra Tour. The WAPT is the Official

the King & Bear course, which will also seed the second week’s event, a

of putters on the World Golf Village

Qualifying Tour for the LPGA’s Symetra

64-woman Match-Play championship

18-hole putting course.

Tour, providing more opportunities for

at Slammer & Squire. There will be no

women to play professional golf and

cut in the Stroke-Play event and all

and of equal importance – the tourna-

to advance their careers to the next

players will advance to the Match-Play

ment will celebrate women’s initiatives

level. “We are very excited to bring the


by providing programming such as

WAPT to the Jacksonville area and, in

leadership forums, executive network-

particular, the World Golf Village”, says

has taken a strong stance in its sup-

ing, and education. The programming

Gary DeSerrano, WAPT president. “We

port of women in golf. The company

will be developed and provided by Gen-

are certain the next stars of women’s

lists a dozen exceptionally talented

eration W, a national nonprofit based

professional golf will look forward to

women on the LPGA Tour on its official

in Jacksonville Beach (FL) founded and

this new and exciting event.”

pro roster and provides equipment to

run by Donna Orender, whose mission

many other top-ranking female profes-

embraces the guiding tenets of educa-

opportunities, Pro-Am spots, tickets,


tion, inspiration, and connection and

key sponsorships, and volunteering is

the power of women’s leadership.

available on the tournament website

Since the company’s inception, PXG

PXG’s clubs are built to spec for each individual golfer and the company will


In addition to the golf competition –

“The Generation W programming

Information on elevated hospitality

at and by call-

be providing onsite Swing Sessions for

is a critical aspect of this event,” said

ing MediaShare Consulting Group at

interested attendees to get a club in

Erica Bennett. “There are myriad career

904.838.4962. You may reach the office

hand experience. There will also be op-

opportunities outside the ropes for

by email at mberman@mediasharecon-

portunities to test PXG’s extensive line

women in the golf business and in the

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Proud Title Sponsor

Not just another fish in the sea.


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what's new

Welcome To Jekyll Golf Are you tired of sucking at golf? Tired of wasting money on golf equipment that isn’t made for normal human beings? Then Jekyll Golf is the perfect place for you. Now, who in the Arnold Palmer is Jekyll Golf exactly? You have a lot of questions, don’t you? Well, allow us to formally introduce ourselves, we are Jekyll Golf, the producers and providers of the best golf equipment for golfers of all skill levels. What? That isn’t enough for you to buy our amazing equipment and apparel? Fine, then strap on those khakis and get ready to be impressed because you’re about to learn about the best golf equipment company around.

Who Is Jekyll Golf Like we already said, we’re the best golf company ever. However, since you need more convincing, we’ll just have to tell you why we’re the best golf company ever. Jekyll Golf was founded way back in the year 2020. While we may be the new kid on the block, we do one thing the other big golf brands can never do — provide you with high-quality golf equipment and apparel that actually helps your game. We make high-quality equipment for golfers of all skill levels. Whether it’s your first time picking up 38

a putter, or you’re a veteran at getting stuck in sand traps, you’ll always find everything you need to improve your game here at Jekyll. We do this not because we care, but because everyone deserves access to golf equipment that works correctly and looks amazing.

We were founded by golfers, and we’re dedicated to providing the very best gear to every golfer. Our comfortable apparel is made from spandex blends that are wrinkleresistant and will help keep you cool, even if you lost yours in the rough on hole 2. Our lightweight and highly durable sunglasses will help you keep your eye on the ball with scratchresistant polarized lenses. On top of all this, our gear and equipment are made from the highest quality materials to make sure they do their job over and over again.

Why Is Jekyll Golf Jekyll Golf is named after the Doc himself. Similar to the infamous literary character, golf has two sides to it — a friendly gentleman’s game that can quickly turn even the coolest of individuals into a raving monster.

How Is Jekyll Golf We’re great, thanks for asking! When you need the best golf gear, equipment, and apparel, be sure to check out Jekyll Golf. We’re here to help improve your golf game.

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Story by Greg Wise Photos by Greg and Beverly Wise

young guns

The Power of Passion

Great things happen

when you put your passion for golf to good use. Long time Scotland resident and golf historian from “The Old Course,” Keith McColl, now living in The Villages, Florida, reconnected with long time friend, PGA Professional, Mark Panigoni in 2019 to create the Highlander Junior Tour. The mission at Highlander Junior golf is “Providing opportunities for Florida’s Junior golfers to improve themselves through playing regular, affordable competitive golf at great venues close to home.” Both Keith and Mark are strong in leadership and organizational skills. “We believe passionately that golf is way more than just a game,” explained Keith, “Golf is a game of life, that teaches us from an early age, lesson that make us better adults.” “By juniors playing competitively, they learn about honesty, integrity and respect


for each other. Combine that with the overall connection of sportsmanship, being responsible for time management, creates an environment that expands their knowledge for life,” Mark commented. Highlander Junior Tour offers junior golfers competition starting at the age of 6 with their “Wee Highlander” group that only play 9-hole events with shortened yardages, with the “Highlanders” group, from age 9 through the age of 18 . The Highlander group has 3 playing categories; The Old Tom Morris Division for the older juniors with strong playing ability, The Young Tommy Morris Division for those Mid-Range ages, and The Bobby Jones Division for the younger golfers

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

playing from the forward tees. An advancement rule for all Highlander junior divisions is that if an individual player wins 3 metals in a season, they will advance into the Claret Jug Division, ultimately giving them a stronger competitive side, as well as giving the balance of those young people in that division the opportunity to excel. The 2020 season for the Highlanders Junior Tour produced over 750 junior golf entries over the course of 40 events. The Highlander Junior Tour will be expanding their tournament offering to as many as 45 events in 2021 with the expectation of 1,000 junior players overall. The Highlander Junior Tour is a golf development tour that recognized that at some stage of play all junior golfers, most likely must simultaneously log scores online and complete a normal course scorecard during competition play. Highlander Junior Tour has developed their own online scoring app but is not intended to replace the manual completion of a scorecard, yet it should only be used as an additional method of keeping score. Parent are asked to download the app on their Smart Phones, and they can

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

keep score for the younger kids, while the older players can track their own advancements and position on the app. Check out their website at If they are at a location near you and you would like to see some junior golfer serious about this great game… stop by and check out the Highlander Junior Tour, proving that The Game of Golf is in good hands for the future.


freddy's fairway thoughts

By Fred Seely


Your club's starter gets little gratification. Keeping play moving isn't easy, and telling people they're way down the page to start doesn't make friends. No one grumbles at the starter at Cherokee Town and Country Club in Atlanta. He's Ken Burrow, who was a tight end for five very productive years for the Atlanta Falcons and looks like he could strap it on today.

Frolicking at Deerwood

The new officers of the Jacksonville Area Golf Association (from left) are Jeff Adams, President, TPC Sawgrass; Billy Walker, Cimarrone, Treasurer; John Tancredi, Marsh Landing, Vice President/Administration; Cary Helton, San Jose, VP/Tournaments; and Larry Stark, Jax Beach, Secretary.

We all know that a club's power has moved from the golf

professional to the general manager. Maybe five percent of the golf jobs are remnants of the old days; the new world is money, money, money, and the front office is where that's at. That being said, here is as good an illustration of that as you'll find: In our area, the local amateur association annually gives awards, and one is Pro of the Year. It's highly prized because it comes from an outside group, rather than their own association where politics can be a factor. The Pro of the Year is chosen by the amateur association's executive committee in November and it's announced in January. I've been on that committee and I can assure one The 2020 awards for the Northern Chapter of the and all that there's no North Florida PGA (from left): Jennifer Borocz, North politicking; winners Florida PGA, Player of the Year; Aaron Russell, are chosen after Sawgrass, Assistant of the Year; Hayes Farley, San proper deliberation. Jose, Teacher of the Year; John Brooks, Red Numbers Golf, Amateur of the Year; Kim Lawlor, Palm Valley, The last four Youth Development; Todd Bork, San Jose, Private Club recipients — the LAST Merchandiser; Brad Smith, Bent Creek, Deacon Palmer FOUR — have lost Award; Tommy Aycock, St. Johns GC, Bill Strausberg their jobs between Award; Brian Riddle, TPC Sawgrass, Professional Dethe vote and the velopment and Resort Merchandising; Wes Tucker, St. announcement. One Johns GC, Pro of the Year, Public Course Merchandiser more: the award was and Patriot Award; Gary Vanover, Sales Representative started 10 years ago of the Year; and Anthony Baur, St. Johns GC, Superinand the first recipitendent of the Year. Not present: Tim Peterson, Senior Player of the Year, and Jordan Dempsey, Performance ent just lost his job. Center at TPC Sawgrass, Player Development. One more: this year's runner-up lost her job. So, maybe the PGA of America isn't just a labor union, after all. Or maybe the amateur association's award is just a jinx.


The Deerwood Country Club is the oldest gated community in Northeast Florida and it was one of Florida's first when it opened in 1961. It has led a rather peaceful and proper existence ever since, growing to over 1,000 very nice homes and six times hosting a PGA Tour event. Big scandal: a million-dollar home overlooking the 7th fairway has turned out to be a studio for making pornographic films and — gasp! — a house of prostitution when the cameras weren't rolling.

Thoughts • The PGA Tour says it's going to crack down on slow play. Hahahahahahahahahaha. • C'mon. Let the public watch PGA Tour events. Maybe trim the number a bit, and maybe devise Tim Tebow is a hero in these parts but he likes his a system to spread privacy, so that's why he lives in one of Northeast people out, and Florida's most private communities. maybe empower the It's Glen Kernan, which is just off a major east-west marshals to enforce road but very difficult to find. There's a small sign and rules. But golf fans a road that winds through another development. Sort are mature people of like Seminole. If you don't know where it is, maybe who obey rules. you should get the clue that you aren't wanted. Treat us like adults. Tebow got married and bought a new home overlooking the 10th fairway. Nothing understated: five • Whenever ratbedrooms, six baths, 8,000-plus square feet. Paid $2.9 ings drop, there's million in 2019. a solution: haul out Tiger. Seems that anything he does — or, especially, DID — gets attention, so HBO stooped to its lowest level with its four-part series on him. Please, media moguls, we've had enough of the Trailer Trash he once consorted with. They aren't victims. Celebrity may have its pitfalls but he's been beaten on enough. • Not everyone finds Florida as their Shangri-La. Fred Funk and family have decamped to Texas. • Why not have the pro-ams? Foursomes are playing all over the world every day and haven't heard of COVID-19 infections. • Do not take the Title IX ruling lightly. The new administration passed a rule that says any school accepting federal money cannot discriminate. The basis was a Connecticut high school rule that said those identifying themselves as being transgender must be allowed to compete with whatever sex they claimed to be. Don't laugh, because some small, liberal college is going to have a very, very good women's golf team before long. • Maybe the Pebble Beach pro-am was cancelled for a reason: that was the only way to get rid of Bill Murray.

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Wide Open Beaches

Fairways For Miles Known for action-packed racing and world-famous beaches, Daytona Beach also offers savvy golfers challenging courses at exceptional value. Come and play where the pros play, at LPGA International and other unique courses. Savor local seafood along scenic waterways. Explore historical and cultural sites. And pair your golf outing with a range of coastal accommodations to create a perfect package.

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improving performance

Ultimate Long Drive Academy– Not Just for Long Drive Competitors Ultimate Long Drive, Inc recently announced the launch of their newly created training program they call “Ultimate Long Drive (ULD) Academy”. The program features a multi-stage approach to the very popular quest to drive the golf ball farther. The Academy concept is a natural fit for the company that owns two premier long drive series’. Amateur Long Drive™ and Xtreme Long Drive® (professional series) will generate 150+ long drive tournaments among 1000+ competitors in 27 countries for 2021. All participants will be vying for a spot in their respective World Championship at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club in Chicago in September 2021. Although the ULD Academy concept was developed with long drive competitors in mind, it will be very popular with all golfers. The curriculum is based on clinics organized into three stages. The first two stages are fitting training for any golfer who wants to gain length. After all, who doesn’t want to drive the ball longer? Stage One Clinics focus on swing speed and touch on conditioning. Students will realize a measurable increase in swing speed in their first clinic. Stage Two clinics focus on ball speed, shot Aaron


shaping, and more conditioning. Stage Three Clinics focus completely on long drive competition. Physical and mental preparation leading up to a tournament along with planning and carrying out a winning game-day strategy are key segments. Managing the grid according to conditions and hitting the winning shot close out Stage Three clinics. All stages are designed to be halfday and one-day clinics. In addition to clinics, on-going personal training /Colton coaching will only be offered by

Ty certified ULD Trainers. Each trainer will certify individually for each stage of the curriculum. ULD Academies are licensed to qualified golf instructors in specified territories. Those interested in becoming certified may apply on the company’s website at https://ultimatelongdrive. com by clicking the “Licensing” tab under “Academy”. Golfers who wish to attend clinics in their area may have their names added to a waiting list to be notified of schedules...also under “Academy” on the company’s website. For long drive competition information, visit and

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


growing the game

Affordable Junior Golf Access Across All 50 States Youth on Course —

the non-profit organization dedicated to opening doors, supporting dreams and transforming the lives of young people through opportunities on and off the golf course – is expanding nationwide, bringing life-changing growth and learning experiences to 2.8 million junior golfers across all 50 states. Leading up to this moment and amidst a pandemic, 2020 was historic for the organization. A few notable highlights include:

• A 56% increase in membership, now totaling more than 120,000 and eclipsing one million rounds played

• Subsidized a total of 400,000 rounds, an 100% increase from the previous year and generating a total of $2.8M back to golf courses from


unused tee times

• Amidst a challenging year, fundraising support exceeded expectations with nearly $1M generated from

the 100 Hole Hike and the establishment of a long-term partnership with NBC Sports’ GolfNow which includes a RoundUp donations program and development of a custom booking engine Juniors nationwide ages 6-18 may sign up for a Youth on Course membership at join. In partnership with Allied Golf Associations, GolfNow, PGA and LPGA Sections and golf course management companies, Youth on Course will sign on facilities in more than 10 new regions throughout the year to provide expanded access to affordable play and off-course growth and learning experiences. “We are incredibly delighted by the successes our nonprofit had in 2020 and are thrilled to increase the momentum in 2021 with the initiation of our nationwide membership,” says Michael Lowe, vice president of programs for Youth on Course. “Knowing all the benefits that come with our sport, more and more families are introducing their children to golf, and Youth on Course is keeping kids involved into their teen years and beyond. Establishing a footGolf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

print in all 50 states is a testament to the positive influence Youth on Course has been for juniors over the years.” For individual courses looking to join Youth on Course’s network, general managers and head professionals can sign up their facilities by filling out an online interest form. In return, facilities will receive subsidies for each round played at $5 or less during one of the designated times for Youth on Course members. Fueling the golf industry, Youth on Course subsidizes rounds for members and puts money back into allied golf associations and individual courses. The organization’s structure helps golf courses fill typically unused tee times and garner additional revenue with more than 40% of members playing with paying adults. The amount reimbursed back to participating courses has almost doubled in the past year, reaching close to $2.8 million this year alone and totaling nearly $8 million dating back to 2005.

More information: 831.625.4653 Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


outh orth florida PGA north south florida florida PGA PGA north southflorida floridaPGA PGAnorth southflorida floridaPGA PGAnorth south

––Junior Tour Kicks Off–– The SFPGA Junior Tour held its firstever Winter Kickoff at Indian Spring Country Club over Martin Luther King Junior Weekend. The 54-hole event featured 80 of south Florida’s top junior players and marked the first event and major for the 2021 Junior Tour this season. Leading the boys 13-18 division was Jaden Russell of Miami. Russell finished two-over-par after carding a 72 the first round and then back-to-back 73s. Over the course of the three rounds, Russell accumulated six birdies. One stroke behind Russell was Ibby Carrington of Port St. Lucie. Carrington finished his first round two-over-par before going one-under after his second round, followed by a 74 on Monday. Addison Klonowski of Naples led the girls 13-18 division. Klonowski started the tournament four-over-par but turned things around during her second round after carding a 69, including six impressive birdies. Klonowski

concluded the tournament five-overpar to win the first event of the season. Remi Bacardi of Miami finished second

in the division, three strokes behind Klonowski. Bacardi carded five birdies during her final round.

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Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

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eorgai section PGA georgia section PGA georgia section PGA georgia section

Jason Kuiper Named Georgia PGA Teacher of The Year Bobby Jones Golf Course’s Director of Instruction, Jason Kuiper, has been awarded the title of 2020 Georgia PGA Teacher of the Year. The award is the second highest award the Georgia PGA Section gives and recognizes a PGA professional who is an outstanding teacher of golf in the given year. The Georgia PGA Teacher of the Year award was inaugurated in 1986 to honor outstanding teachers of golf among the ranks of the PGA of America membership. The award is based on the professional’s overall performance in teaching, innovative and special teaching programs they have played a key role in implementing, and articles they have contributed to in books and magazines. “I am honored to earn the title of Georgia PGA Teacher of the Year,” said Jason Kuiper, Director of Instruction at Bobby Jones Golf Course. “I’m truly lucky to get to spend my time teaching the joy of golf, afnd I plan to continue using my expertise in the sport to help

Golf Course’s Grand Slam Academy, a

others for years to come.”

state-of-the-art instructional program

This is not the first time Kuiper has

that offers indoor and outdoor lessons

been recognized for his exceptional

and clinics and teaches golfers of all

coaching abilities. The highly regarded

ages and skill levels and abilities. The

golf instructor was awarded the Top 50

program utilizes the latest teaching

Kids Coach Award by U.S. Kid’s Golf in

and club fitting technology through

2020, recognized as the North Florida

The Bandy Instructional Center, which

PGA Section Assistant Golf Profes-

is equipped with state-of-the-art cam-

sional of the Year in 2014 and received

eras, hardware and software technol-

honorable mentions as a US Kids “Top

ogy that allow instructors to provide

50” Teacher in 2013, 2016 and 2017.

students instant feedback.

Kuiper has 15 years of industry experience. Prior to his current position at Bobby Jones Golf Course, he served as the Director of Instruction at the Woodloch Golf Performance Academy in Pennsylvania and the Head Teaching Professional at the McCord Golf Academy in Florida. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Moravian College and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. 50

The Georgia PGA is one of the 41 “Jason continues to bring pride to our

Sections of The PGA of America. Its

course with his extensive list of acco-

membership includes over 890 PGA

lades,” said Brian Conley, General Man-

Professionals working at over 260 golf

ager of Bobby Jones Golf Course. “Jason

courses, clubs and ranges through-

has brought a strong presence to our

out the state. In keeping with the

team. His positive attitude and ability

fundamental objectives laid down by

to create an encouraging environment

its founders, one of the Georgia PGA’s

for all students have helped make our

primary goals is promoting the game of

program all it can be, and we are fortu-

golf through clinics, junior and minor-

nate to have him on our team.”

ity golf programs, consumer programs,

Kuiper teaches through Bobby Jones

and print and television media. Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

orth florida PGA north florida PGA north florida PGA north florida PGA north

Florida Golf Professionals Recognized for Exceptional Accomplishments By North Florida PGA Section 12 North Florida PGA Professionals have been selected for this year’s Section Awards, as recognized by their peers, for their outstanding achievements throughout 2020. The NFPGA Section Awards recognize the exemplary service, dedication, and accomplishments of NFPGA Members on and off the course. From merchandising to player development to mentoring their fellow Members, these individuals embody what it means to be a PGA Professional. “We are so proud of our nearly 1,500 men and women that make up the North Florida PGA Section”, states NFPGA Section President, Kevin Paschall, PGA. “At this time, we get to recognize the Professionals, as nominated and voted on by their peers, who are considered as the best of the best in their field during 2020. Congratulations to our 2021 NFPGA Section Award winners.” This year’s honorees will be recognized at the NFPGA Annual Meeting and Celebration of Members on Monday, June 7th at Reunion Resort in Kissimmee, Florida. The North Florida Section is honored to have the following Professionals serve the Association, its Members, and Associates.

Cheryl Anderson, PGA Teacher of the Year Cheryl Anderson, PGA | Self-Employed Teaching Pro, Mike Bender Golf Academy The Teacher of the Year Award is designed to recognize a PGA Professional who is an outstanding teacher of golf among the ranks of PGA membership. This award is based on a professional’s overall performance in teaching; unusual, innovative and special teaching programs initiated or implemented; articles published; as well as outstanding golfers the professional has instructed.

Brian Riddle, PGA The PGA Professional Development Award recognizes the PGA Professional who is the model educator of PGA Golf Professionals. This award is designed to give special recognition to an individual PGA Professional for outstanding and continuing contributions to professional education.

Donald Moyer, PGA

Kevin Paschall, PGA Golf Professional of the Year Kevin Paschall, PGA | General Manager, Legacy Golf Club at Lakewood Ranch & Serenoa Golf Club The PGA Golf Professional of the Year Award is one of the highest honors the Association can bestow on a working club professional whose total contributions to the game best exemplify the complete PGA Professional. This award embraces a wide range of services executed by the club professional. Wellregarded as a model PGA Golf Professional. 52

Tim Beckwith, PGA Bill Strausbaugh Award Tim Beckwith, PGA | Director of Golf, The Oaks Club The Bill Strausbaugh Award is designed to recognize PGA Professionals who by their day-to-day efforts have distinguished themselves by mentoring their fellow PGA Professionals in improving their employment situations and through service to the community. Professional Development Award Brian Riddle, PGA | Head Golf Professional, TPC Sawgrass

Patriot Award Donald Moyer, PGA | Head Golf Professional, Grand Vista Golf Club The Patriot Award is presented to the PGA Professional who personifies patriotism through the game of golf and demonstrates unwavering commitment and dedication to the men and women who have valiantly served and protected the United States of America.

Tim Beckwith, PGA Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Deacon Palmer Award Tim Beckwith, PGA | Director of Golf, The Oaks Club The Deacon Palmer Award honors the PGA Professional who personally displays outstanding integrity, character and leadership in the effort to overcome a major obstacle in their life.

Grace Hurley, PGA

Todd Bork, PGA

Karen Wise, PGA Youth Player Development Award Karen Wise, PGA | Director of Instruction, Chi Chi Rodriguez Golf Club The Youth Player Development Award recognizes the PGA Professional who has displayed outstanding leadership in junior golf and who reflects the ideals of those who work with youth.

Merchandiser of the Year- Private Todd Bork, PGA | Head Golf Professional, San Jose Country Club The Merchandiser of the Year Award is designed to recognize those PGA Professionals who have excelled as business persons/merchandisers in the promotion of golf. The PGA honors PGA Professionals in three categories: Private, Public, and Resort facilities.

Merchandiser of the Year- Resort Grace Hurley, PGA | Head Golf Professional, Ponte Vedra Inn and Club The Merchandiser of the Year Award is designed to recognize those PGA Professionals who have excelled as business persons/merchandisers in the promotion of golf. The PGA honors PGA Professionals in three categories: Private, Public, and Resort facilities.

Steve Brewer, PGA Player Development Award Steve Brewer, PGA | Director of Instruction, Dubsdread Golf Course The Player Development Award recognizes the PGA Professional who has displayed extraordinary contribution and achievement in the area of player development. This award considers the Professional’s growth of the game, leadership, commitment at the Section and National levels in the area of player development, and the meaningful impact made at the facility. Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Mark Verkey, PGA Merchandiser of the Year- Public Mark Verkey, PGA | Head Golf Professional, Palmer Legends Country Club The Merchandiser of the Year Award is designed to recognize those PGA Professionals who have excelled as business persons/merchandisers in the promotion of golf. The PGA honors PGA Professionals in three categories: Private, Public, and Resort facilities.

Emily Motta, PGA PGA Assistant of the Year Emily Motta, PGA | Assistant Golf Professional, Mountain Lake Club The Assistant of the Year Award is designed to recognize the Assistant PGA Professional whose enthusiasm, growth, and leadership to the facility and involvement in the Chapter reflect the potential to lead and contribute to the future of the game and industry.


By Will Dennis

This podcast is intended to give

be giving the advice! One of the main things we

people in our industry something

want to add this year is YouTube

to listen to where we can connect

videos. I am currently in school

and talk about things we deal

to be a dog trainer, and we know

with every day. Do we go off on

that a lot of us have golf course

tangents? Of course! It is all for

dogs. I want to make some videos

entertainment though.

on how to train your dog on the

I listen to podcasts through-

course. Golf course etiquette is

out my day at work and always

important for everyone including

have wanted something where

your pup, even though I am sure

people in our industry talked

everyone thinks he is very cute.

about real things we deal with,

We will go over basic obedience,

not just information. We already

introducing your dog to your cart,

do webinars, conferences, and

staying off greens, staying out of

classes throughout the year. Plus,

bunkers, and more!

there are tons of great podcasts

We want to know from you, if

out there where you can learn and hear about other successful people in our industry. We tend to stay away from the educational side but we always give tips! Throughout the past 7 months doing this I have found it interesting that people reach out to me for advice on the job or trying to get a job at a golf course, but it happens all the time. It’s cool that someone who listens to you just talk about the “not so educational” parts of our job would think I could help them with their own careers. It is interesting but I really do enjoy it. It makes me want to do some more informative podcast episodes so we want to add in some educational episodes as well. We 54

want to keep our regular episodes every

you have a dog on the golf course

Wednesday and then once a month add

and have any issues with him please

in an interview with a notable Assistant

get in contact with me. I would love to

or Superintendent who can give our

help you or we can make a video about

listeners tips on stuff we do on the job

it! We appreciate all of our new listeners

or how to advance in their career.

and look forward to the new things we

This is something we want to implement sometime in 2021. If you are someone who feels they can talk on a podcast about their career or if you feel you have something to say that could help out our listeners ,please get in contact with me so we can talk. We have quite a few listeners who are still in turf school or just graduated and everyone can always use more guidance. We

have coming this year!

Instagram and Twitter: @notsuperspod Email: Apple: us/podcast/not-so-superintendent/ id1524670764 Spotify: 5CmcrbLhLQCM88gq2Y1ach?si=fcwhc pozTmuTAYis3r4I5A Merchandise:

are certainly not the ones who should Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

SunnilandSUPERSpotlight: Eric Ruha When I started school as a business major, I quickly decided at that time, office space was not for me. Turning to my Grandfather for advice as he and I took great pride in maintaining his landscape and turf, he said, “You know there are college programs that teach you how to manage a golf course.” Right up my alley. From my start of entering the Agronomy program at The Ohio State University, I knew golf course life fit perfectly. My first job while in school was at the famed Double Eagle Club in Columbus, Ohio where twenty rounds a day was a lot. I was told upon leaving there after six years, that I have seen greatness and what it takes to maintain a superior conditioned course, now go do it in the real world. We edged sprinkler heads there with scissors and pulled poa out of bent greens with tiny knives on our hands and knees. It was very intense to say the least. Fast forward to the present and I’m wrapping up 20 years in Naples, Florida. Moving here in the golf boom of the late 90’s and early 2000’s proved advantageous coupled with hard work.

Eric and his son John 56

Kenyon Kyle, CGCS, hired me as the grow in Assistant at Shadow Wood Preserve in 2002. In 2004, I made the jump to Course Superintendent there. With his recommendation, I was promoted to of Director of Agronomy for Shadow Wood CC over all three courses in 2008 upon his departure to North Florida. We have enjoyed five years of capital investments improving all aspects of our three courses with the help of Rees Jones and his principal architect, Bryce Swanson. All greens were redesigned and completely rebuilt, we re-grassed all turf surfaces, bunkers were rebuilt/ recontoured with lining and major landscaping enhancements helped bring Shadow Wood a new look and feeling that members could be proud of. My wife Kara, of eight years, is

thankful that we can take a real family vacation this year with our daughter Evelyn (7) and our son John (5) in the absence of a major golf course project. Hopefully we can explore out West. I am enterally grateful for those in my past who have helped me learn the industry and succeed. Terry Buchen, MG, CGCS took a chance on me with absolutely no course experience and Todd Voss schooled me as well. Steve Bill taught me the grow in ropes at Shadow Wood Preserve. My General Manager, Brian Bartolec, CFO, Soren Spiers and Director of Golf, Andy Scrivner are hands down, the best I have ever worked with. That is truly no B.S. As a team of eight years strong, we understand that this is a cruise ship and we service our members accordingly to keep it running smooth. I am actively searching to name my book upon my retirement to include all the interesting and funny stories over my career. There are plenty. Stimp 7.0, Green Grass/Gray Hair, Uphill Putt Both Ways, Power Fade This and Brown Isn’t Always Bad are just a few I’ve dreamed up.

Eric and his daughter Evelyn Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Sunn 28-0-0

Minors Blend

Sunn 6-0-0 Blend

Total Nitrogen ..........................28% 20.2% .......... Slow release Nitrogen 7.8% ......................... Urea Nitrogen

Total Magnesium (Mg) ..........0.50% Soluble Magnesium (Mg) ....0.050% Soluble Iron (Fe) ...................3.40% Chelated Iron (Fe) .................1.60% Total Manganese (Mn) ..........0.25% Soluble Manganese (Mn) ......0.25% Soluble Zinc (Zn) ..................0.10% Sulfur (S) combined ..............3.50%

Total Magnesium (Mg) ..........0.50% Soluble Magnesium (Mg) ......0.50% Soluble Iron (Fe) ...................3.40% Chelated Iron (Fe) .................1.60% Total Manganese (Mn) ..........0.25% Soluble Manganese (Mn) ......0.25% Soluble Zinc (Zn) ..................0.10% Sulfur (S) combined ..............3.50%

Derived from: Manganese Sulphate, Zinc Sulphate, Iron Glucoheptonate, Iron Sulphate, Magnesium Sulphate.

Derived from: Manganese Sulphate, Zinc Sulphate, Iron Glucoheptonate, Iron Sulphate, Magnesium Sulphate.


Sunn KTS


Soluble Potash (K2O) ..............25% Total Sulfur (S) .........................17% 17% combined sulfur 0% free sulfur Derived from: potassium thiosulfate




Total Nitrogen ..........................12% 12% Urea Nitrogen Chlorine not more than ..............2%

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PO Box 8001 Sanford, Florida 32773-8001 Share your photos & videos #sunnilandcorp Follow us @sunnilandcorp • 800-432-1130

header Roseate Spoonbills at Seabrook Island

Sustainability at Seabrook Island, South Carolina is a wonderful example of how the path to environmental sustainability can grow and change over time. Home to two Audubon International certifications, this thriving community, located on a coastal barrier island in South Carolina, roughly an hour southwest of Charleston, is a certified Sustainable Community that is also home to one of our certified Cooperative Sanctuary golf courses. The Seabrook Island Club was the first golf course in South Carolina to

join the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf in 1996 and continues to maintain its certification today. For more than twenty years the unique, two-course club demonstrates their dedication to sustainability and quality of play, and just last year was named Club of the Year by the South Carolina Golf Association. The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Certification for Golf focuses on the five core program aspects to make the best decisions for the environment and their groundskeeping: Environ-

mental Planning, Wildlife & Habitat Management, Outreach and Education, Chemical Use Reduction and Safety, Water Conservation, and Water Quality Management. In keeping with this, the Seabrook Island Club continues to make great improvements by increasing naturalized areas, creating wildlife corridors, testing water quality, utilizing an integrated pest management program, and much more. On their last recertification review, Amy Dabbs, a Clemson Extension Horticulture Agent, was given a tour of the course by Sean Hardwick, Director of Golf Course Maintenance. Dabbs expressed: “Seabrook Island Club proves that it is possible to balance humans, animals, and the environment in harmony. Their commitment to environmental stewardship is clear.” After seeing Seabrook Island Club’s successful Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary certification process,

Seabrook Island Lake House 58

Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

the Seabrook Island Property Owners Association (SIPOA) decided to add a Sustainable Communities certification for their entire community. They soon became the first certified Sustainable Community in South Carolina after completing the requirements and meeting the strict program criteria in 2017. As part of their Sustainable Communities certification, SIPOA had to develop and implement management practices and policies according to a community-driven Long Term Sustainability Plan (LTSP) that has timelines and measurable goals addressing 14 focus areas, including wildlife conservation and habitat enhancement, water conservation, energy efficiency, health, and transportation. During the process, the community focused on promoting healthy lifestyles by creating designated smoke-free areas and supporting local farmers’ markets, as well as improving their environment with efforts including beach restoration. As a result, Seabrook Island was named one of America’s

Great White Egret at Seabrook Island Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7

Seabrook Island Club's ACSP certified golf course Best Restored Beaches by the American Shore and Beach Preservation Association in 2016. For the third time in 35 years, the beach was restored using inlet relocation methodology by replenishing it with beach-quality sand. This process helps reverse or offset the effects of erosion and in turn helps the beach provide more storm protection, better quality habitat for wildlife, and to maintain its use as a recreation destination. They currently have another beach restoration project planned for 2029. To achieve their educational goals, SIPOA hosts multiple educational events every year on such issues as stormwater education, boatersmaritime/aquatic issues, and regional land use planning/development issues for residents and visitors. There are also environmentally focused reading materials available in the library and informational brochures. Seabrook Island, Audubon International’s Sustainable Communities certification, and the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf show that both the community and club are dedicated to sustainability and the environment around them. If you’re interested in pursuing certification at your local club or community visit: Audubon International, an environmentally focused non-profit organization offers members numerous certifications and conservation initiatives to protect the areas where we live, work, and play. Their programs are designed to increase environmental awareness, encourage sustainable environmental efforts, and educate both their members and their communities. 59

SunnilandSUPERSpotlight: Bryan Dixon

Welcome to Cotton Fields Golf Course, my name is Bryan Dixon and I am the superintendent. My journey has been slightly different than the usual superintendent of golf courses and I hope that this encourages people to stay the course and take advantage of every opportunity that presents itself. None of this would not be possible if it wasn’t for my wife (Jamey) and my 4 kids(Calley, Coston, Broox and Gunnar), as they provide me all the inspiration in the world to pursue my passion in the “TURF LIFE”. I have been with Henry County Parks and Recreation for going on 16 years and started out as an entry level employee. It did not take long before I started taking advantage of the continuing education opportunities that Henry County has provided over the years through Georgia Recreation and Parks Association(GRPA), Sports Turf Managers Association(STMA), Georgia Golf Superintendents Association(GGCSA) and the Georgia Department of Agriculture (Cat. 24 Pesticide Lisc.). At Henry County Parks and Rec, I oversee, develop and manage the Integrated Pest Management Plan for 28 parks (over 150 sports playing surfaces) and directly manage the day-to-day operations for our golf course. I have been with the golf course for the past 4 years and it has been an uphill battle due to the conditions of the course when I first took over. With some love and patience, we have grown tremendously. We continue to set records with revenue and round of play. Through Covid-19 we were closed for 9 weeks and yet we continue to thrive. This is a testament to my team of PART-TIME staff that can only work 29 hours a week and we are open 7 days a week, 363 days a year and managing over 20,000 rounds of walk-in play a year with 60

no memberships. My staff shares my passion, vision and pride in all that we do. A true team! During my time here we have made a lot of noise in our community, including having one of our Par 3s mentioned in the Atlanta Journal Constitution and recognized as a Top Public Golf Course by the AJC in 2020. Through my work at Cotton Fields

Golf Course, I have won a few awards and recognitions for outstanding work including • Parks Maintenance /Operations Network Distinguished Professional of the Year for all of GRPA State (2020) • Facilities and Grounds Professional of the Year for GRPA District 6 (2017) I feel extremely blessed to part of such a wonderful organization in Henry County. Our community is amazing and continues to raise the bar with every passing year. I hope that through reading my story, that someone out there will be impacted. Although, my road was different, it did not stop me from finding my niche, pursuing my dreams via alternate route. Take advantage of any education you can, through networking, workshops, and field days. The people that live the “TURF LIFE” are really the salts of the earth and enjoying watching others succeed. Amazing what people can accomplish! Golf Central • Volume 21, Issue 7


Patriot Golf Day® has become the largest grass-roots golf fundraiser in America – a joint initiative of The PGA of America and the USGA, Patriot Golf Day enlists the support of public and private golf facilities across the country. Funds support Folds of Honor, providing educational scholarships to the children and spouses of service members killed or disabled while serving in America’s Armed Forces.

GET INVOLVED Although the national promotion of Patriot Golf Day is over Labor Day weekend, you can play golf any time of the year to support the families of our fallen and disabled service members. Here are a few ways to get involved.






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