Michigan Amateur Championship
Commemorative Edition Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course â—? Sponsored by the Golf Association of Michigan and The Ford Motor Company
In 1947, Everett Kircher began building his dream we know today as Boyne Resorts Michigan…
Walter Hagen Sam Snead
Golf and its legends are part of our history, as is The Michigan Amateur Championship. Embedded in history as one of Michigan’s most historic courses, Belvedere Golf Club has set the standard for northern Michigan.
Everett Kircher Byron Nelson
The 92nd Michigan Amateur Championship Boyne Resorts Michigan celebrates the Classic, the Champions, the Course.
BOYNE. Michigan’s first name in golf. 800.GO.BOYNE www.boyne.com
Table o f C o n t e n t s Welcome to the Belvedere Golf Club ......................................... 4 Peter Flanigan, President, Belvedere Golf Club
Welcome to the 92nd Michigan Amateur .................................. 5 Golf Association of Michigan
The Belvedere Club–A Charlevoix Landmark ......................... 6-7 A True Michigan Event .............................................................. 9 Jack Saylor, Golf Writer, Detroit Free Press
My Favorite Week of the Year ............................................. 13-15 Steve Braun, Head Golf Professional, Belvedere Golf Club
Playing the Belvedere, Local Knowledge ............................. 16-17 Steve Braun, Head Golf Professional, Belvedere Golf Club
Great and Fond Recollections ............................................. 18-19 Jack Berry, Golf Writer’s Association of America
Champion Proﬁles: Chuck Kocsis–Six Time Champion ................................. 21 Glenn Johnson–Five Time Champion.............................. 23 Pete Green–Four Time Champion ................................... 25 Bud Stevens–Three Time Champion ............................... 27 Steve Maddalena–Three Time Champion ........................ 29 Throughout this Commemorative Edition, you’ll ﬁnd interesting information as we celebrate the Classic, the Champions and the Course.
THOMAS FORD CONLAN ASS’T SEC’Y TREAS.
P. O. BOX 218 / CHARLEVOIX, MICHIGAN 49720
231 547-2512 231 547-0311
To All Players and Guests: The Belvedere Golf Club welcomes you to Charlevoix and the 92nd Men’s Michigan Amateur Championship. This is the 39th time that Michigan’s most prestigious amateur golf event will be played here, suggesting that this championship and The Belvedere are synonymous with each other’s ﬁne history. The Belvedere Golf Club was founded in 1925. Designed by Scotsman William Watson, the membership appreciates our "classic" course design and has taken steps to preserve the original architectural features. The predominant winds are from the west and north over Lake Michigan, adding variety to course strategy and shot making.
Michigan Amateur Champions who have won here is a list of Who’s Who in Michigan amateur golf history. In addition, golf legends Bobby Jones, Walter Hagen, Tommy Armour and Sam Snead have competed here. Tom Watson is an honorary Club member who has been welcomed back over several decades. Some years ago, Ken Venturi played here at the recommendation of Gene Sarazen, who had competed here and still remembered the 16th hole. It’s a pleasure to introduce our ﬁne management staff: Mr. Tom Conlan – General Manager, Mr. Rick Grunch – Golf Course Superintendent, and Mr. Steve Braun – PGA Professional (a 1979 Michigan Amateur Finalist). Our staff and our Club Tournament Committee are working to make the 2003 Michigan Amateur the best event yet.
The Belvedere welcomes all the media, tournament sponsors, The Golf Association of Michigan, including Mr. David Graham – Executive Director, and Mr. Ken Hartmann – Director of Rules and Competition, who will conduct the tournament. And we welcome back those players who have competed in past Michigan Amateurs here. For spectators, The Belvedere offers great spots to follow multiple matches. These include:
9th tee – which overlooks holes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8. 17th tee – which overlooks or provides at least partial views of holes 12, 13, 15, and 16. Again, the Belvedere Golf Club, in service to amateur golf, is pleased to welcome you to Charlevoix and the 2003 Michigan Amateur. The expectation is that great playing conditions and weather, along with perhaps a sporting dose of seasonal wind, will provide an outstanding venue to identify the best player from Michigan. Steve Braun
Peter Flanigan President, Belvedere Golf Club
Belvedere Golf Club 4
Spring 2003 On behalf of the Governors of the Golf Association of Michigan, it is our pleasure to welcome you to the 92nd Michigan Amateur Championship. We appreciate the support of the Ford Division of Ford Motor Company, the presenting sponsor for this year’s championship. Through their support, the GAM is able to support the growth of amateur golf throughout Michigan. This year’s championship marks the return to the Belvedere Golf Club, which is hosting this championship for the 39th time after an absence of 14 years. The list of champions crowned at Belvedere is impressive including the 1st in 1930 with Chuck Kocsis, who won the ﬁrst of his six Michigan Amateur Championships including three at Belvedere! Other multiple winners at Belvedere include Peter Green with three, bud Stevens with two, and Dan Pohl with two. We are looking forward to all of the past champions and ﬁnalists to join us at the Sweet 16 dinner during the championship week. We want to recognize the players who qualiﬁed for this year’s championship. As the most prestigious amateur championship for the residents of Michigan, it is a tremendous accomplishment to even qualify for the tournament. Over 700 will compete to qualify for the ﬁeld of 156. We would also like to recognize our hosts at Belvedere Golf Club – their membership, their Board and their staff. All of who have been working on preparations for this championship for over two years. Their thoughtful planning and work will be evident in the high quality golf course and facilities available for the championship. Finally, we would like to express our sincere appreciation to the GAM volunteers and staff who have worked so hard to insure the 2003 championship is a successful experience for all involved. Without their active support and involvement, this championship would not be possible. Good luck to the players as they compete for the honor of being crowned 2003 Michigan Amateur Champion! Sincerely
Paul Beaupre President Golf Association of Michigan
David Graham Executive Director Golf Association of Michigan
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 5
nd 92 Michigan Amateur Championship
The Belvedere Club A Charlevoix Landmark
n the spring of 1878, the Charlevoix Summer Resort Association was formed on 25 acres of land purchased for $625. They started with six cottages. A substantial pier was built on the south bank of the channel at the west end for boats to land. In the early days you had to come to Charlevoix by boat or stage, the nearest railroads were at Petoskey or Traverse City. The steam boat Thomas Fryant, pictured below, made stops all around the Little Traverse Bay, then directly to the Belvedere Dock.
By 1892 the new Belvedere Hotel was in operation featuring a large dining room. Most families had their meals there and the Sunday evening hymn sing was a tradition. In the early years the hotel was the center of social activities for the resort.
The Chicago & Western Michigan Railroad laid their tracks and built a depot between the cottages of the Belvedere and Pine Lake, now called Lake Charlevoix. There was also a short train that went back and forth from the Belvedere to Petoskey and Bay View several times each day.
Belvedere Golf Club 6
uring the summer of 1925, a group of Belvedere Club members conceived the idea of building a golf course on the high lands south of Charlevoix, overlooking Lake Michigan, Round Lake and Lake Charlevoix. Under the close supervision of William Watson, one of the most modern and beautiful golf courses in the country was in the making with gentle sloping fairways and undulating greens. The fescue fairways and the seaside bent greens were quick to take hold, and the last nine holes were ready for play in early 1927, and the ďŹ rst nine later that same year. On August 25, 1925, the Belvedere Golf Club was organized as a private club for the purpose of operating the golf course and club house. The Belvedere . . . still considered one of the ďŹ nest courses in America.
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 7
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A True Michigan Event
By Jack Saylor
Jack Saylor is the Golf Writer for Detroit Free Press The Michigan Amateur tournament is a true Michigan event. The ﬁrst championship was held in Grand Rapids in 1906 and the tourney moved from there to Saginaw, Detroit, Flint, Jackson and up north for the ﬁrst time at Charlevoix's Belvedere in 1930-31, joining Saginaw Country Club, Country Club of Detroit and Gull Lake Country Club as favored sites. When the Detroit District Golf Association began conducting the Amateur after World War II, the tourney became centralized and rotated almost exclusively between Belvedere, Black River Country Club in Port Huron and the Country Club of Jackson. The onset of the Chuck Kocsis Era in 1930 signaled a domination of the championship by Detroit-area players, as he was joined by fellow Detroiters Bob Babbish, Fred Kammer, Ziggy Zawadski, Sam Kocsis, Jim Funston, Ben Smith, plus Royal Oak's Ed Ervasti and Tom Draper of Berkley in playing in the title rounds. Only the occasional intrusion of Flint's Bill Barclay and Fred Turner and a pair of Lansing stars, Lou Wendrow and Reggie Myler Jr., interrupted the metropolitan Detroit area title role. When Glenn Johnson began his amazing streak of match play success with his title in 1954, metro Detroit continued to ﬂourish. The Youngest Champion Grosse Ile wonder worker won ﬁve times in the next nine years Chuck Kocsis, and the only times he didn't, age 17, at Belvedere Golf Club the Staghorn Trophy remained close by as Melvin (Bud) Stevens and brother, Donald,
each captured the crown once and two others went to Pontiac standouts Lloyd Syron and Mike Andonian.
Tom Watson’s favorite hole of any course he has played, #16 Belvedere Golf Club.
But Western Michigan golfers were being excluded more and more, not by design, but due to the development of courses in their own area and events like the Grand Rapids City and West Michigan Championships which were looked on with increasing favor in that sector. Shortly after the GAM took over the Amateur, the move was made, permanently shifting the Amateur to Belvedere. This was great, particularly for some of the participants, many of the governors, the press and some hangerson in this venue. The surroundings are unmatched, the old course is testing and made to order for match play. But while it did seem to attract a few more out-state combatants to the tourney, the expenses involved in the trek to Charlevoix, plus the limit of practice and clubhouse facilities combined to keep many away - particularly the young college set without deep pockets. Out-staters like Doug Hankey of St. Johns, Lynn Janson, then an MSU star, Denny Vass and Steve Maddalena of Jackson, eventually a three-time winner, Rod Sumpter of Grand Blanc, Mike Hurley of Albion, Dave Graulau of Alma, even a couple of West Michigan invaders, Randy Erksine of Battle Creek and Marshall's John Morse, along with the Mt. Pleasant bomber Dan Pohl, captured titles. Through it all, metro Detroit maintained its exalted
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 9
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A True Michigan Event By Jack Saylor
Now, there was always something special about the tournament at Belvedere, where it returns for a nostalgic visit this season. The pattern was always very similar as the troops hit Charlevoix. Could Johnson, the old warhorse who kept qualifying for match play in his 60s - do it again? Could Green the grinder, continue his ageless magic? Could lightning strike and maybe the two old foes, who ﬁrst tangled in 1956 when Peter was merely 15 years old collide in a match made in heaven? Could Bud Stevens' back hold up to the stern test of double-rounds?
position as non-pareil Peter Green of Franklin won the ﬁrst three of his championships, plus victories by Bill McDonald of Troy, John R. Johnson of Rochester, John Morgan and Pat Chisholm of Birmingham and Dave Van Loozen of Union Lake ascended the throne. In 1988 the return to moving the Amateur around the state widened the focus and the competition became more intense than ever. Greybeards like Green, Grand Blanc's Greg Reynolds, Del DeWindt of Bloomﬁeld Hills and Flint's John Lindholm were perennial contenders. They were joined in the chase by midammers like Maddalena and Randy Lewis, the up-state tiger from Alma, long-hitting Kevin Vandenberg of Kalamazoo, DGC star Bill O'Connor, Russ Cunningham and others. Soon the overriding change was the heightening of interest in college golf. The young lions included the likes of Josh Mondry of Franklin, Heath Fell of Lapeer, Brian Atkinson of Cassopolis, Doug LaBelle of Mt. Pleasant, Michael Harris of Troy, Shawn Koch of Howell, Stephen Polanski of Livonia, Andy Matthews of Ada, Korey Mahoney of East Lansing and the parade of young MSU aces, Yuper John Koskinen, Andy Ruthkoski, Casey Lubahn and Eric Jorgensen.
How would the annual title contenders do - the private clubbers like Mark Timyan, Roy Schultheiss, John Morgan, and Greg Reynolds, and publinx stars such as Billy McDonald, Mike Kerr and Johnny Johnson? Schultheiss and Morgan broke through, so did McDonald and Johnson, the others ﬁred, fell back and left their mark. Just as memorable were evenings spent at the Grey Gables, where the irrepresssible Johnson, usually goaded by his runing mate, Freddy Behymer, would lead festive sessions of sing-a-longs by the piano...ah, but that's another story for another time. For a variety of reasons it's great to get back to Belvedere in Charlevoix the Beautiful.
Oldest Sectional Qualiﬁer Dr. Maurice Taylor was 73 when he shot his age at Atlas Valley country club sectional in 1985. He shot 80-81 at Belvedere Golf Club, missing the qualifying ﬁeld of 64.
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 11
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My Favorite Week Of The Year By Steve Braun
I started playing in the Michigan Amateur in 1964. I was 19 and couldn’t even pronounce Charlevoix, let alone tell you where it was located. But my high school Latin told me Belvedere probably came from bel (beautiful) vedere (to see or view). Hence, beautiful view - I was intrigued.
Juilleret’s or the (since torn down) Parkside Restaurant which hung out over Round Lake in downtown. This was, and is, after all, “Charlevoix the Beautiful”, the resort town on 3 lakes, I didn’t qualify for match play that year and the weather with a ﬂower lined main wasn’t very good. (A friend of mine teed off in the playoff street, a drawbridge in for a match play spot in a driving snowstorm of big, wet downtown and a ferry ﬂakes in mid-June! So, my ﬁrst impression wasn’t that service to nearby Beaver good.) Island. Players brought their families and stayed at Steve Braun By the second or third year of my trek north, I knew that the same cottages year after Belvedere Golf Club Charlevoix was a special place and that someday I hoped year forming friendships that Head Golf Professional to own property somewhere nearby. The week of the have lasted for decades. This Michigan Amateur had simply become my favorite week was a small town where the of the year and I competed for nearly 20 years. Part of Amateur was a big deal and the galleries were large and the reason was the course. To this day, Belvedere is one appreciative. of my favorite courses, but there are a lot of wonderful courses that have hosted the Michigan Amateur. Yet, at Because the tournament at the Belvedere was so special most of them, when you lose, you go home. to so many people we (the staff and members of the Belvedere) wanted to try You didn’t go home as to make the 2003 return soon as you were knocked to Charlevoix special. out in Charlevoix, and This program is part of that made the event that attempt and features special. You took a articles on the 5 living week’s vacation and stuck players who have won around. You ﬁshed, the Michigan Amateur 3 water-skied and explored times or more. Harbor Springs and Petoskey. You ate “all you There were many can eat” shrimp at the other ﬁne players who Argonne where the match made their mark in the play pairings were posted Amateur. Space doesn’t (still the best shrimp allow recounting the I’ve had anywhere). You accomplishments of all enjoyed raucous singing past Michigan Amateur at the Grey Gables piano Champions and ﬁnalists bar after a ﬁne meal (still but, with a sincere fabulous) or watched the apology to those who are boats come through the left out - here goes: channel from your dinner table at the Weathervane. Randy Lewis of Alma You had breakfast at won the Championship
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 13
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My Favorite Week Of The Year By Steve Braun
Steve Braun came to the PGA later in life than most and has been at the Belvedere as their professional since 1997. He was runner-up in the 1979 Michigan Amateur losing to Pete Green.
twice in the 90’s and with his other considerable accomplishments was named the Amateur Golfer of the 90’s by the GAM. John Grace was runner-up in 1967 (to Bill Newcomb who has had a distinguished career as a golf course architect) and John won at the Belvedere in 1971 and went on to represent the U.S. in the Walker Cup.
And what of some of the Michigan Amateur Champions who went on to distinguished professional careers? Long hitting Dan Pohl won the Championship twice (both at the Belvedere) and had a successful PGA Tour career shortened by back problems. He lost the Masters Championship to Craig Stadler in sudden death. Lynn Janson won in 1968 at Belvedere before a distinguished professional career which saw him win (among many other titles) two Michigan Opens and four Michigan PGA Championships. In addition he qualiﬁed for seven U.S. Opens and seven National PGA Championships. He was also named a collegiate All-American and was Michigan’s PGA Player of the Year ﬁve times. Randy Erskine was runner-up to John Grace in 1971 and won in 1972 (both at the Belvedere) and as a professional has played in ten Buick Opens, one U.S. Open and two National PGA Championships. He has won (among many other titles) the Michigan PGA once and the Michigan Open four times and was named the Michigan PGA Player of the Year twice. John Morse won the Amateur in 1978 and was runner-up in 1980 before Brothers Winning Medalist Honors: Dave Hill 1956 & 1957 and Mike Hill 1958 & 1962. Both had very successful PGA Tour careers with Dave winning the Vardon Trophy one year and Mike having a very successful PGA Senior Tour career.
Tommy Armour & Walter Hagen 1934 going on to a successful PGA Tour career which saw him nearly win the U.S. Open at Oakland Hills. Other ﬁnalists have had accomplishments worth mentioning here. Bill McDonald won in 1981, has won every Publinx title worth holding in Michigan many times over and won the USGA National Publinks Championship. Ed Ervasti won in 1947 and was runner up on two other occasions including a loss to Reggie Myles at the Belvedere in 1953. Chris Mile was a Oldest Match Play runner-up in 1965 and again Qualiﬁer: Clarence Farley, 68, at thirty years later in 1995. Belvedere Golf Club Greg Reynolds was runnerup in 1986 and capped a in 1968. wonderful amateur career in Michigan by winning the United States Senior Amateur Championship in 2002. Rod Sumpter was a runner-up in 1970 and won in 1974 (both at the Belvedere) and narrowly missed qualifying for the PGA Tour before a tragic car accident shortened his competitive golﬁng career. Another way we have tried to make the 2003 Championship special was by inviting back all of the past ﬁnalists that we could locate. I know from speaking with many of them that they also thought this was a special week. I hope that this year’s contestants will feel that way
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 15
leave most contestants with a short iron shot to a tiny green perched on a knoll built into a hillside. One should not go for the pin if it is left front. And a second that is long nearly always brings a bogey. A safe second to the right front may kick toward the pin with good results.
4 - Played from an 1 PAR elevated tee this hole will
PAR 4 - This hole requires a drive down the left side (where O.B. lurks) to avoid a blind second. Except on boggy days the second will run further than one expects. Favor the right side of the green as the ball will work left. Putting from front to back can also tumble left.
Playing the Belvedere
straight-forward course. There is a chance for a recovery on nearly every hole except for quite wild tee shots. On the whole the greens are not large and marginal approach shots will tumble off many of the surfaces (except in wet conditions) leaving one with many different options for getting the ball up and in for a saving par. This is part of its beauty as a wonderful match play course.
B elvedere Golf Club is a very honest,
surrounding trees usually donâ€™t allow any wind to affect the tee shot much except a following one.
14 PAR 3 - A straight forward par 3. Note that the
The green drops off on the left so be careful not to pull the ball if left with a hanging lie on the right side of the fairway.
4 - A good strong tee shot down the center or 13 PAR left center should leave a short shot to the green.
PAR 4 - Your tee shot depends on the wind and the placement of tee blocks. The out of bounds to the left comes up quickly with a pulled tee shot and even a long straight shot not cut quite enough will leave the second altered by a large oak down the left side. Picking the right club for the second is important because of a wonderful tiered, rolling green. Short of the hole is nearly always good unless the pin is cut in the right rear. A shot to the right side of the green will nearly always roll all the way back off the green. Down the middle, on in two, two putts - smile.
PAR 5 - Only the longest of hitters will reach this 540 yard hole in two. Depending on the wind you may want to drive with a club that cannot reach either of the fairway bunkers because they bring the crossing creek into play. If you cannot reach in two, favor the left side or the large willow on the right may affect your approach shot. Once again, over the green is trouble.
with a tiny green, requires a precise long iron or wood. Missing the green to the left (even if in the bunker) is better than missing it right.
4 PAR 3 - Par is a wonderful score here. A 236 yard par 3
from the tee is ten yards or so left of the fairway bunker. Long hitters will require only a wedge to the green except in a rare easterly wind.
3 PAR 4 - Here is a good birdie possibility. A good line
Favor the left center to take the lateral hazard on the right out of play. Keep it short of a back pin position as there are some very uneven lies over the green due to shade and roots.
4 - If the prevailing wind is up it will be blowing 2 PAR right at you making the tee shot much more difﬁcult.
in your face. Players will hit anything from 7 irons to ﬂip shots for their second but the shot must be precise because the green is very narrow and tilted at an angle to the fairway. It is also built into a hillside and many a shot runs off the green to the right and 40 yards down the hill. The little shots around this green require imagination and a very deft touch. Many good rounds have been lost to this simple looking little hole.
4 - This, simply put, is a great short par 4. It 16 PAR is only 346 yards but the prevailing wind is right
just left of or just over the fairway bunker. Strong players may knock the ball over the hill by carrying over the corner trees but O.B. lurks there and their tee shot may hang up in the thick rough that runs down the hill to the lower level of this hole.
PAR 4 - A very strong ﬁnishing hole that requires a tee shot between bunkers and very tall grass on the right and a huge maple on the left. Even if you play two ﬁne shots you now must negotiate a green that seems to be all mounds. Up and in from off the green requires an exceptional shot. Good Luck!
PAR 3 - Think bumper pool. On this par 3 – don’t miss it left or you’re down the hill with little chance for three. To the right side of the green is a small hill which will deﬂect the ball on to the green. Use it.
Belvedere Golf Course
the fairway spills off on the right side and two old willows can play havoc with the second. If the wind is from the north this hole can be quite difﬁcult. The second is usually played from well above the green making judgment important.
12 PAR 4 - The tee shot should be kept left because
judged approach and it is very easy to three putt from any distance above the hole when the pin is cut to the front.
PAR 5 - A very hard par 4 or very easy par 5, this
15 nearly 90° dog-leg right requires a tee shot played
11 PAR 4 - Often into the wind, this hole begs for a well 17
PAR 5 - This can be reached by many players and should offer a good birdie opportunity. If one has to lay their second short of the fairway bunkers, they should take into account that the third shot is more downhill than they probably realize and that the shot will often run a bit more than expected.
left make this an interesting tee shot as do the three bunkers. But, if the wind is helping at all, most strong players can blow it over the bunkers leaving an iron to the green. If the wind is from the south, the tee shot must be ﬁt between the bunkers and the out-of-bounds.
5 - A short par 5 or long par 4. Good players will 9 PAR be happy with a four here. Tall grass right and O.B.
PAR 3 - This is a great little par 3 particularly when the prevailing wind is whistling. This is a long narrow green and it’s important to be on the correct tier. That said, even very good players are usually short here when the wind blows.
nd 92 Michigan Amateur Championship
Great and Fond Recollections By Jack Berry Jack Berry is a former golf writer for The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press and Past President of the Golf Writer’s Association of America. The Michigan Amateur, Belvedere Golf Club and Charlevoix bring back warm memories and I’m pleased to see Michigan’s oldest championship return “home” after a 14 year absence and hope it gets into a regular rotation. Belvedere always brought out the best and that’s reﬂected in the list of champions, going back to Chuck Kocsis who won the ﬁrst of his record six Amateurs when the championship ﬁrst was played at Belvedere in 1930. In my time covering the Amateur at Belvedere, ﬁrst for the Detroit Free Press and then the Detroit News, I watched Bud Stevens, Bill Newcomb, Lynn Janson, Pete Green, Randy Erskine, Dan Pohl, Steve Maddalena
and Bill McDonald win the Staghorn Trophy, each one prominent in Michigan golf throughout their careers. The Pohl-Stevens playoff in 1975, when Pohl was a relatively unknown collegian from Mt. Pleasant, was a classic duel of the state’s two biggest sluggers. Bud had won the Amateur three times but the guard was changing from career amateurs to collegians on their way to pro careers, Pohl, Erskine and John Morse on the PGA Tour and Janson in the golf shop and the Michigan PGA circuit. My ﬁrst Amateur at Belvedere was 40 years ago, in 1963, and that started the run of 26 straight Amateurs on one
of Michigan’s most historic courses and a course that seemed made for match play, the amateur game. It brought out the best and the best won. The Amateur’s traditional date of the week following the United States Open made it a push each year to Tommy Armour 1934 get home from the Open on Monday, unpack and then repack for the drive north, with the ﬁrst round of qualifying Tuesday. Marshall Dann, my predecessor at the Free Press, and the Walter brothers, John at the News and Lew at the Times, always spoke of the week at Belvedere as one of the highlights of the summer. Al Cotton, sports editor of the Jackson Citizen-Patriot, and Rollo Sims, who had a radio show in Jackson, always made it to Charlevoix. Jackson was (and is) one of the state’s foremost golf hotbeds and there always was a strong contingent of players from Jackson. Fred Stabley Jr. was up from the Lansing State Journal. Stabley nicknamed Earvin Johnson “Magic” when Johnson was playing high school basketball in Lansing. Stabley was a good golfer and always had hopes of qualifying for the Amateur but never was able to put together two strong qualifying rounds. The non-combatant writers used to hustle out very early in the morning to “check the ﬂags” with no objection from the committee. Unlike some of the contestants, the writers played very fast. Covering the Amateur was different than most events. We wrote on typewriters on card tables in the clubhouse and got the local Western Union telegrapher to come out and pick up the copy and send it downstate. That seems like a century ago, before Highest Score fax machines and multiple for a Medalist: telephone lines in the 146 clubhouse. Today everyone Tom Mase ﬁles by computer. Belvedere Golf Club
Belvedere Golf Club 18
Belvedere had a cachet
More Recollections By Jack Berry like Pebble Beach, home of the California Amateur. It doesn’t have an ocean but there’s Lake Michigan, one of the world’s great inland seas, and Lake Charlevoix. Say “Belvedere” and the image was the green-shingled white clubhouse on the highest point of the grounds. The putting green between the clubhouse and hilltop ﬁrst tee was crowded early to late at the beginning of the week and then became less and less crowded as the match play halved the 64-man ﬁeld after every round. Ray Kipke, a Charlevoix athletic legend, operated out of the small pro shop that was like the pro shops at Scottish courses - some tees, balls, gloves and candy bars. Marie Blissett ran the little restaurant in the clubhouse and baked the best pies in the north. Out by the driveway, between the ninth green and 10th tee was a small trailer operated by the Kiwanis and Lions clubs and serving hot dogs, chips and pop with picnic tables under the trees. Few of the players knew the background of the course, that it was designed by Scotsman Willie Watson who emigrated to the United States in 1898, helped lay out and build Minikahda Country Club in Minneapolis where he then worked as pro and greenkeeper, designed another great Minneapolis club, Interlachen, worked in California and headed to northern Michigan in 1925 and designed and built Belvedere with ﬁve teams of horses and 150 men. Watson designed a classic small-greens course laid out in valleys on each side of the road, a perfect match play course and the favorite northern course of Tom Watson and his dad, Ray, who spent their summers at nearby Walloon Lake. Watson’s favorite holes were the 391-yard uphill 11th and the 346-yard 16th with its narrow green shelved into the side of a hill. Michigan Golf Hall of Famer Pete Green, a short game magician, practically owned Belvedere and won in 1969, 1979 and 1986. Pete is a player for the decades - he also won the Amateur at Michaywe Hills in 1996.
Each June Belvedere was Michigan’s golf capital, drawing players from every corner of the state, hopeful high schoolers and collegians, some of whom pitched tents at the state campground on the north side of Lake Charlevoix or shared rooms in the motels, and businessmen who ﬁlled the motels in town. Grosse Ile insuranceman Glenn Johnson arrived in a Cadillac convertible with a clothing collection to rival Doug Sanders.’ Johnson planned on playing all week and brought enough clothes to change for every round. As one of Michigan’s all-time best match players and a ﬁvetime Amateur champion, Johnson usually went through his full wardrobe. Many players and the writers took their families and rented cottages and the ﬁrst time up it was an adventure trying to ﬁnd in the dark “our” cottage on Pine Point off the Boyne City road. We rented it from Perry Smith’s father-in-law. Perry worked for the post ofﬁce in town and during the Amateur he did the scoreboard and answered all questions for visitors during the week, the most frequent one being: “What’s the cut going to be?”.
Randy Lewis of Alma won the Championship twice in the 90’s and with his other considerable accomplishments was named the Amateur Golfer of the 90’s by the GAM.
It always seemed that the week started cold and we had a pot-bellied stove that we’d load with wood before going to bed. It glowed cherry-red for a couple of hours and everyone was hot but by the middle of the night it would be ice cold. My daughters would edge into Lake Charlevoix even though it seemed as though the ice had just broken up. Invariably on Saturday, when it was time to drive back downstate, it would get boiling hot. I said my Belvedere memories were warm.
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 19
Six Time Champion
Chuck Kocsis, who will be 90 this year, was named Michigan's golfer of the 20th Century by the Golf Association of Michigan. The Belvedere Golf Club is fortunate to have its history intertwined with such a great player. He still holds the Belvedere course record with a sparkling 64 recorded on a raw October day in 1964. At 17 and the youngest champion he won the ﬁrst Michigan Amateur that was held at the Belvedere in 1930. He won the event six times, three at the Belvedere. Chuck is reluctant to speak of his accomplishments but, as can be seen from his record, no other amateur in Michigan has come close. It is evident when speaking with this great player that he is well grounded in his roots. He was one of fourteen children and started caddying at Redford - at the age of ten. When prodded about how he became so good while so young, he starts on a familiar tack - speaking of someone else. In this case it was Bill Fenwick, a friend he lived with his last year in high school and who Chuck calls the best athlete he ever knew. Many examples of his friend's talents were recounted before he ﬁnally, almost begrudgingly, returned to his early prowess. "Bill's dad had a huge sandpit next to the house and we practiced explosion shots to a mangy mowed out green we had created. His dad would come home and say he'd give us a dime for each one we holed. I got to where I could make a ﬁfteen to eighteen foot bunker shot more often than a thirty to thirty-ﬁve foot putt. His dad stopped offering the dimes." We asked Chuck a number of questions and he obligingly shared his thoughts. Best player from Michigan? "Chick Harbert" Favorite memory in golf? "1938 Walker Cup - the Prince of Wales apologized to me for the unsportsmanlike conduct of one of his countrymen." Why only eight Michigan Amateur attempts? "Honestly, I was just so busy with customer golf that I only just had so much time for tournament golf and had to make tough choices." What about the equipment of today and the distances kids are hitting the ball? "They're bigger, stronger, and
more ﬂexible and listen, there was a fellow from my day, Ronnie Williams, who lost to my brother Sam in the ﬁnals at Belvedere in 1941. . .He could hit it with today's kids using his 1940's equipment and the kids using today's spaceage materials. He drove the ﬁrst green at Belvedere against Sam in the ﬁnals (374 yards).”
The Champ’s Record State Junior Champion - 1927-1928 State High School Champion - 1928-1929 State Amateur Champion, Played 8 Times, Won 6 Times 1930, 1933, 1934, 1937, 1948, 1951 Golf Association of Michigan Champion - 1932, 1933 Michigan Open Champion, Beat Tommy Armour in Playoff in 1931, Also won in 1945, 1946 Big Ten Champion - 1934, 1935 NCAA Champion - 1936 Western Amateur Runner Up - 1937, LA. CC Walker Cup Team - 1938, 1949, 1957 National Open Low Amateur - 1934 -1937 Masters - Low Amateur - 1952 Beat the ﬁeld last two rounds. Invited 11 times, played 9 times National Amateur Runner Up - 1956 - Qualiﬁed 15 times U.S. National Open Seniors Champion 1969, 1970, 1979 International Seniors Champion 1970, 1973, 1983, 1988 Mexican Amateur Runner Up -1948
When asked about the Belvedere and Charlevoix he remarked that he had always hoped to retire to the area, but it didn't work out. "The Belvedere Golf Club has 18 solid holes - one of my favorite courses anywhere. And I loved the beauty of Charlevoix and the ﬁshing. Biggie Bergmann used to take me out and we always got our limit and them some. I'll look forward to returning
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112 Clinton St.
Charlevoix, MI 49720
Insuring Charlevoix Area and Belvedere Club Homes Since 1936 All Forms of Business and Personal Insurance Charlevoix Agency (pictured l-r): Noreen Aninos, Shari Kline, Don Voisin, Connie Doan, Dana Pajtas
Charlevoix Country Club
Glenn Johnson Five Time Champion He was decked out in his customary bright and nearly outrageous golf outﬁt, striding the fairways of the Belvedere conﬁdently and maybe with a bit of jaunty cockiness - and why not? It was 1961 and Glenn Johnson was about to win his ﬁfth State Amateur in an eight year span and his second at the Belvedere. In the span of twelve years from 1952-1963 Glenn won the Amateur ﬁve times, was runner-up once, semi-ﬁnalist three times and a quarter ﬁnalist once. His match play record in this span was a remarkable 50 and 7. The question was whether his sartorial splendor was part of his persona or part of his guile. Glenn said more than a few of his friends and competitors kidded him about his outﬁts and that one time Tommy Grace told him to wear more subdued gear for their match the next morning. “I found my crimson outﬁt with matching crimson ﬂaps on my shoes and when Tommy spotted me the next day, his eyes bugged out in disapproval - I knew I had him two down before we hit our ﬁrst shots!” Glenn played in four U.S. Opens, four U.S. Amateurs, ﬁve Senior Amateurs and Four Senior Opens. He was low amateur at the 1981 Senior Open. He won the 1955 GAM Championship, three Eastern Seniors, three Western Seniors, the American Senior Stroke Play and won the Michigan Seniors Championship six times.
Medalists Who Went On To Win The State Amateur ● ● ● ●
Chuck Koscis in 1937 and 1948 (70) both times with 1948 at the Belvedere. Reggie Myles, Jr. 1953 (141) at Belvedere; the long-time head pro at Walnut Hills Robert Meyers 1966 (140) at Belvedere, longtime Michigan PGA member. Bill McDonald, great public links player in Michigan who went on to win the USGA Public Links Championship medalist at Belvedere in 1981 (140). Randy Lewis, 1992 co-medalist (142) and again in 1999 (139) was named Michigan Amateur “Golfer of the Decade” for the 90’s by the GAM.
Michigan Amateur Champion 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958 and 1961 Now 80, Glenn has many fond memories of the Belvedere and Charlevoix. “I remember “Drape” (Tom Draper) three putting 18 to hand me the trophy in 1958 - I loved it because he made me putt an obvious “gimme” a few holes earlier right after I had conceded his putt which was outside of mine. I remember a match with Reggie Myles that went seven extra holes before he beat me. I should have won 1 through 6 before he beat me on the long par four 7th hole. I remember the Grey Gables with Breezy at the piano and all the singing. And I remember when the GAM left the Belvedere in 1989 to start rotating the Championship. Charlevoix’s Mayor, Sam Supernaw got it written in the Detroit Free Press that I was one of the players who wanted it moved (not true) because all the girls in town had ﬁgured out how old I was.” Glenn played the Belvedere in 2002 and said he really enjoyed its improved condition and that he looks forward to returning. Charlevoix just wonders what outﬁt he’ll be wearing!
Celebrating the Classic, the Champions, the Course 23
TEE IT UP!
ANTRIM DELLS PUBLIC GOLF COURSE Rated ✮✮✮✮’s by Golf Digest 2002 "Places to Play." Former co-host to the Michigan Amateur, this fair but challenging 18 hole championship golf course, designed by Jerry Mathews offers a heavily wooded back nine, a more open front nine and two of the best ﬁnishing holes in Northern Michigan. Four different daily rates plus a sundown special are offered during the Summer. Reduced Spring & Fall rates. Enjoy lunch and great views of Grand Traverse Bay. Meeting, banquet facilities, small group lodging, pro-shop and driving range. Antrim Dells is located on US 31 - 12 miles south of Charlevoix in Atwood.
(231) 599-2679 or (800) 872-8561 www.antrimdellsgolf.com, Email: email@example.com
CHARLEVOIX COUNTRY CLUB Offering excellent sport and play for golfers of all levels, the Charlvevoix Country Club is just two miles north of Charlevoix on US 31. The heather-lined, eighteen hole, championship golf course designed by Jerry Matthews provides challenging rounds of golf time after time. Please join us at Mahogany's, the restaurant of the Charlevoix Country Club, offering fabulous fare for any occasion. Public Invited. (231) 547-9796 www.chxcountryclub.com
Pete Green Four Time Champion Pete Green’s phenomenal success in the Michigan Amateur Tournament spans 5 decades. In 1956 he qualiﬁed for match play at the age of 15. At the time he was the youngest player ever to do so (since then two other 15 year olds have also qualiﬁed). In 1996, he became the oldest player to win the championship (at age 55) and he won the tournament in four different decades - a feat unmatched in the event’s history. He won at the Belvedere in 1969, 1979, and 1986, and at Michaywe’s Hills Pines in 1996. His start in the game came through caddying for his father (pulling his cart) on a summer vacation at a little course in Canada. His junior golf days were spent competing with and enjoying the friendship of Tommy Grace of Detroit Golf Club and Buddy Badger of Red Run. He honed his skills at Orchard Lake and in 1958 he was the number one player on Birmingham’s state high school championship team. Pete played his college golf at North Carolina where he was a three-time All American in the early 60’s.
Michigan Amateur Champion 1969, 1979, 1986 & 1996
and I won the GAM Father-Son Championship two times and that my son and I have won it three times. I’m also proud of my efforts In addition to his Michigan Amateur exploits, he won working on the Michigan At age 55, Pete became the GAM Championship three times, the Horton Smith Medal Tournament. I, the oldest Michigan six times, the Michigan Medal seven times, the Michigan Glenn Johnson, Bill Albright Amateur Champion. Seniors once, the Michigan Mid-Am once and the Mid- and John Morgan worked Atlantic Amateur once. He also qualiﬁed for two USGA hard to keep it ﬂourishing.” At 15, he was the Juniors, three US Opens, sixteen US Amateurs (spanning youngest Match Play four decades), three USGA Mid-Ams, and one USGA When he speaks of Belvedere Qualiﬁer. Senior. and the Charlevoix area, there is a warmth that comes Attending college in North Carolina he, of course, fell in to his tone. “I know there were various reasons that love with Pinehurst and had an outstanding record there the event got moved but when it was at the Belvedere it in the prestigious North-South Amateur Championship. was really special. There were so many factors involved He was medalist there in 1959 (the year that a fellow - coming to the same beautiful area where each year new named Nicklaus won the event). In 1960 he was the experiences were discovered, going out to dinner at area runner-up and was a semi-ﬁnalist twice losing to Joe restaurants and bumping into other players and their Inman and Curtis Strange. families, having townspeople and members come out in large numbers to watch, playing this wonderful course While Pete is understandably with its small, undulating greens. It was just a week Highest Qualifying proud of many of his my family and I looked forward to– just as I’m looking Score of 158 in 1978 accomplishments, it is forward to this year’s event.” and Lowest Qualifying obvious when speaking with Score for Playoff of 150 him that a couple of things One wonders if the Belvedere can trigger some old in 1985 were both at stick out. memories and bring out enough of Pete’s short game the Belvedere. magic to allow him to add another decade to his “I love the fact that my dad accomplishments.
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WE SALUTE OUR PARTNERS IN CHARLEVOIXâ€™S JUNIOR GOLF PROGRAM Thanks for all you do for us and good luck with the Tournament. Dean Davenport Executive Director
Belvedere Golf Club Assistant Pro Marty Joy & Teaching Professional Steve Braun
CHARLEVOIX COUNTY JUNIOR GOLF ASSOCIATION (231) 547-6433 (231) 796-7252 Rated One of the Top 16 Junior Programs in the U.S.
Melvin "Bud" Stevens
Three Time Champion
When Bud Stevens started caddying at Plum Hollow at age 10 he had no inkling that that choice would so strongly affect his life. “Bill Uzelac, Sr. got me started and I was hooked from the start. Caddying was such a great experience and just a few years later, I was awarded an Evans Scholarship for college that led to a better life for me and my family.” Caddying also ignited in him a passion for playing and has he ever played! Three times he won the Michigan Amateur, twice at the Belvedere, and twice he was runner-up. His brother Don also won the Amateur once and was runner-up once. Bud also won the GAM championship six times, the Michigan Medal once, the Michigan Junior in 1949 and the State High School Championship in 1951. He qualiﬁed for the U.S. Open four times, and the U.S. Amateur ﬁve times. He was a ﬁnalist in the Western Amateur in the late 60's, and was runner-up in the U.S. Senior Amateur in 1988. Bud had no major weaknesses in his game, but his strength was .... well, his strength. Powerfully built and probably the longest hitter of his era, he only remembers being consistently out driven by one opponent - Dan Pohl (Bud was 42 and Dan would lead the PGA Tour in driving distance just a few years later). “I remember a lot of my matches at Belvedere, but Dan and I really had a great one. He was the best amateur I competed against in Michigan. I holed a chip from over 16 to get the match to even and then he did the same thing at 17
Other Multiple Champions James Standish, Jr. Howard Lee Carlton Wells John Malloy Phillip Stanton Lewis Bredin David Ward Dan Pohl Randy Lewis
1909, 1912, 1915, 1924 1910, 1911, 1920 1922, 1923, 1925 1927, 1928, 1929 1907, 1913 1919, 1921 1926, 1936 1975, 1977 1992, 1999
Melvin “Bud” Stevens
Michigan Amateur Champion 1959, 1963 and 1965
to go oneup. I made a routine par on 18 and Dan hit a towering 9 iron over the huge tree on the right (since lost to lightning) but the ball came to rest at the back of the green. He 3 putted and we were square. We had quite a gallery - that's one of the things I loved about Belvedere and Charlevoix - the local people really supported it and came out in good numbers to watch. I knocked it so far over #1 on my second shot that I was on the second tee but somehow got it up and in for par and a tie. I three putted 2 and he was the Champion.” “I'm really looking forward to coming back to Charlevoix. Every year we would take a family vacation that week and we all anticipated returning.” Take a week again, Bud. Charlevoix looks forward to seeing you.
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Steve Maddalena Three Time Champion Dropped off at Arbor Hills Golf Course nearly every day during the summer as a youngster, Steve Maddalena learned the game under the tutelage of Del Starks and Brian Charter. “There was a junior clinic nearly every day and we really had the run of the putting green, practice area and (after certiﬁcation) the course. My folks knew my brother and I were safe there and we played nearly every day. Later, I played and worked at the Cascades course through my teenage years and into college.” Steve has seen junior programs and college programs really take off in the last few years. “Juniors are better prepared for college programs and college kids today not only play and compete more often but they also get top notch, ﬁtted equipment. We were lucky to get bags and balls. I think it will be more and more difﬁcult to win multiple Michigan Amateur titles. Look at last year's Sweet Sixteen. I think only two of the sixteen weren't in college.” Steve isn't complaining about the difference. After all he played on a very strong University of Michigan team that included John Morse (who was an All-American) and Ed Humenik. Both of these players were on the PGA Tour for a number of years. Steve started playing in the Michigan Amateur his last year in high school. His soon-to-be Michigan teammate, John Morse, won the title the following year and two years later (1980) they would meet in the ﬁnals at the Belvedere. “I remember I didn't have many expectations as I headed back to the Belvedere that summer. I had learned the nuances of the course over the three previous years but I wasn't playing particularly well.” He found himself in the ﬁnals against John and didn't really expect to win. “John had had a great year at U of M and was really playing at a Lowest Round in Qualifying different level than for Match Play: I was but when 65 by Tad Schmidt at Belvedere. he unexpectedly This equaled the 65 Walter bogeyed the par 5 Hagen shot in the 1930 Great ﬁfth hole, I found Lakes Open at the myself one up, and Belvedere Club. then I birdied 6 and
Michigan Amateur Champion 1980, 1990 and 1995 8 to go three up. I still expected John to come back and beat me but he just didn't play as well as he usually did and I closed him out 5 and 4.” Records show Steve was too modest as he was ﬁve under par for the match - a great showing. “I was lucky enough to win two other times at different sites but I'm really sorry the event got moved. My whole family would take a week's vacation - we really looked forward to the beauty of Charlevoix. Plus there were always people who came out to support me - I remember Gene Tower from the Belvedere always seeking me out. I just loved everything about the week.” Steve, in addition to his three Michigan Amateur Championships, has won “thirty or so” Jackson area events including twelve club championships at Jackson Country Club and has qualiﬁed for six U.S. Amateur Championships. The Belvedere (and longtime member and past president, Gene Tower) look forward to your return, Steve. Maybe a fourth title awaits you.
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Play the Belvedere
Tee times for public individual and group play are available at the the Belvedere. The course is open for play April 15 through October 15. Contact the Pro Shop directly at (231) 547-2611 or visit our website at www.belvederegolfclub.com
Belvedere Golf Club Board of Directors Peter A. Flanigan, President John R. Fox, Vice President John W. McDougall, Jr., Secretary F. Carl Schumacher, Treasurer
Mrs. Thomas G. Folliard George F. Meyer James W. McDonnell, Jr. Michael McDonnell Mrs. J. Potter Orr Mrs. Angelo Parrish
Belvedere Golf Club P.O. Box 218 â—? tel: (231) 547-2512 Charlevoix, MI 49720 â—? fax: (231) 547-0311 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Published on Jun 27, 2009
Belevere Golf Club celebrate the 92nd Michigan Amateur Championship in 2003. This commerative edition highlights the history of the golf clu...